Prep 1 hr 30 mins
Cook 45 mins
I realise there's lots of recipes for this, but I figured, what's one more? I made this for the first time about 20 years ago for some co-workers who came over for dinner. They raved about it and I was quite pleased with it myself. It is a bit of work, but as the title implies, well worth it!
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 1⁄2 lbs ground lamb or 1 1⁄2 lbs beef
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1⁄2 teaspoon oregano
- 1⁄2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon basil
- 3 tablespoons parsley, chopped
- 1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
- 1 cup red wine or 1 cup white wine
- 2 medium eggplants
- 1⁄2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1⁄2 cup flour
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup light cream
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄8 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1⁄2 cup cheddar cheese, grated
- 1⁄4 cup breadcrumbs
- 1⁄2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- MEAT SAUCE (SHOULD BE MADE 1 DAY AHEAD AND REFRIGERATED)
- Melt butter in large skillet. Brown meat until no longer pink. Remove with slotted spoon and set aside.
- Brown onions in same pan until tender. Remove onions with slotted spoon and add to bowl with meat. Drain all but 3 tablespoons of butter from pan. Return meat and onions to pan.
- Add remaining meat sauce ingredients to pan. Stir to combine. Cover and simmer for 1 hour. Turn heat up and reduce sauce by one half, stirring frequently.
- Preheat broiler.
- Peel and cut in 1/2 inch slices. Sprinkle with salt and drain in colander.
- Brush eggplant with oil and place on a cookie sheet in a single layer.
- Place under the broiler until golden brown. Turn slices over and broil the other side.
- CREAM SAUCE.
- Melt butter in saucepan, then add flour and stir to combine.
- Gradually stir in milk, cream, salt and pepper. Cook and stir until thickened. Remove from heat, let cool slightly then gradually add in beaten eggs and cheddar cheese.
- BRINGING IT ALL TOGETHER.
- Preheat oven to 350F/180°C.
- Sprinkle bread crumbs in bottom of a 2 1/2 quart shallow casserole dish.
- Layer half of eggplant, meat sauce and remaining eggplant.
- Pour cream sauce over top and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
- Drizzle melted butter butter over top.
- Bake for 45 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and let sit 15 minutes.
- Cut into squares to serve.
- NOTE: This may be frozen or made early in the day and refrigerated. In either case, add Parmesan cheese and melted butter just before baking.