I have a liking for Mediterranean food as they use a lot of similar Indian spices in their cooking. Their cuisine is world famous & I am sure you must have tried at least one Mediterranean dish in your life. I am planning to cook many of their recipes. I made Mousakka last week & it was a vegetarian version. I never thought that this dish would taste so good. I was not a big Brinjal fan & I eat them only when I make Bagara Baingan or Bartha, that is why I kept delaying making this dish. Finally I made it, as I had some friends visiting me & I wanted to make something different. The Brinjal is the life in this dish & it taste ultimate.
I am unlike most people who try to play safe when they plan a menu for guest. Most of the times I make a new dish when I have guest & 99% of the time it has worked great for me. My hubby had come home early on that day & as usual he was very hungry. I told him That I will serve Musakka & he had a big “?” on his face. When he tasted he was hmmmmmm….. kya hain ye? Amazing amazing…. That was enough for me to keep my head high & feel very confident about this dish. Well my hubby is a big critic of my food & if he says amazing then its really good. He doesn’t say amazing very often though & I wait to hear that from him every time. My guest also loved it & my friends hubby who is a big foodie took the recipe too. This dish is definitely on my appetiser list & will serve it more often to my new guests. So if you are my guest you know what to expect:) If you are bored making the very old Gobhi Manchurian , Mushrooms manchurian, kebabs for appetiser, try making this & leave your guests mesmerised.
Making time: 45 mins
Serves: 5 people
Baking safe dish
- I big purple brinjal
- 3- 4 medium size potatoes
- 1 cup minced or grated Paneer
- 1.5 cup chopped White Button Mushrooms
- 1 Tbspn minced garlic
- 1 Tspn Kashmiri chili powder
- 1/2 tspn Coriander powder
- 1/4 tspn turmeric powder
- 2 Tbspn tomato Paste
- 1 large onion chopped
- 2 Tbspn Lemon juice
- 1/4 tspn nutmeg powder
- 4 Tbspn grated Parmesan Cheese
- 2 Tbspn Olive oil
- salt as per taste
Bechamel Sauce (White Sauce)
- 1 Tbspn plain flour
- 3 tbspn butter
- 1.5 cup warm milk
- 1/2 cup cream
- salt as per taste
- Pinch of nutmeg powder
- Cut the Brinjal & potato into 1 inch thick circle shape. Soak the Brinjal in salt water for about 10 mins, drain water & set the Brinjal on Paper towel to dry out.
- Pan fry the Brinjal on both sides until they are browned & set this aside in a plate. In the same pan, pan fry the potatoes on both sides until they are golden brown or cooked.
- In a large Pan add oil, fry garlic for a minute. Now add in onions & fry until they are translucent.
- To this add the tomato paste all the masalas, salt & fry them until fat separation for about 3 mins
- Add the Mushrooms into this & saute for another 2 to 3 minutes.
- Tip in the grated Paneer into the mushroom mixture & saute well until everything is well combined. Season it with lemon juice & turn off the flame.
- Place the butter in a heavy saucepan over medium heat and melt it completely, but do not let it brown.
- Dump in the flour and stir it quickly into the butter. The butter and flour will be a mixture of wet scrambled eggs or might look lumpy.
- Pour in just a few tablespoons of the hot milk, just enough to moisten the flour and butter mixture. Stir thoroughly to loosen up the thick flour mixture.
- Now grab the whisk and gradually add the rest of the milk & cream to the loosened flour mixture, whisking constantly.
- Now you will be left with a thick, warm, creamy mix of flour, butter, and milk. From here you can add salt and Nutmeg powder or even cheese.
- (Note: There is quite a lot of room for adjustment in the quantity of milk. For a very thick, sticky béchamel use about 1 cup milk & 1/2 cup of cream. For a much looser, more liquid sauce, use more milk, to get the consistency you want)
- Layer the fried Brinjal on the bottom of the pan & on top of them layer the potatoes.
- Now add in the Mushroom Paneer mixture on top of the potatoes.
- Pour in the Bechamel Sauce (white sauce) evenly on top of the mushroom mixture & sprinkle the top with grated cheese.
- Bake this in a preheated oven at 220 degree for about 20- 25 mins.
- You can use any filling you want.Since my guests were vegetarians I used Mushroom & Paneer
- You can also add in cheese to your Bechamel sauce
- If you don't have an oven you can microwave this for about 2 mins until the bechamel sauce is set.
- You can make this dish ahead of time & freeze it. You can defrost & bake it just before serving.