Recipe Book Review: Jamies Comfort Food

Covid Comfort Cooking. It’s a real thing. I am slowly working my way through all my slow cooking recipes.

Jamies Comfort Food is a book I have had for a while, and love. It’s no secret I’m a JO fan. I find him so personable and his recipes so relatable. Most of the recipes in this book are a lot more time heavy than his other quick cook books, and this recipe in particular is not something you would start without planning to be the kitchen for a considerable amount of time.  That being said, if you are in the mood for an authentic slow cooking classic, this recipe is for you.
I have not altered the recipe at all, I literally followed it step by step, a first for me !  I suggest serving it with something green, either a fresh salad with zesty lemon dressing, or steamed green beans to balance the richness. Jamie notes that there might be a pooling of the juices and olive oil when serving, however I didn’t experience this. ( perhaps my meat was leaner) if you do, don’t be alarmed it is delicious to mop up the juices with a crusty bread.

Jamies Mighty Greek Moussaka

Serves / Makes 8

2 hours 45 mins +  30 resting time 

Ingredients 

600g mince , half lamb & half beef

Olive oil 

2 onions, chopped

2 cloves garlic

Few sprigs of rosemary

Few sprigs of sage 

1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano 

2 fresh bay leaves

150ml red wine 

2 x 400g tins chopped tomato

4 aubergines

4 medium potatoes

For the white sauce 

50g butter

50g plain flour

750ml milk

1 pinch of ground nutmeg or a grating of whole nutmeg

2 large eggs

1/2 lemon 

50g feta cheese, crumbled

25g Pecorino cheese, grated 

  1. Start by making the ragu; fry the onions, in olive oil for 5 – 10 minutes
  2. Add the meat, cook for 10 minutes until brown, you might need to do this in batches.
  3. Add the wine and cook it away, add the tomato, herbs, 1 bay leaf and a splash of water. Cook for an hour, stir every now and then to check the sauce is not catching on the bottom and add more water if needed. It should be thick and rich after an hour, adjust seasoning and remove bay leaf. 
  4. Meanwhile prepare the aubergines: preheat the oven to 180oC. Slice the aubergines lengthways approx 1 cm thick, season generously with sea salt and leave to drain in a colander for 20 minutes.
  5. Peel the potatoes and slice 1 cm thick, parboil in a large pot of boiling salted water for 5 minutes. Drain, toss with a little olive oil and lay out over the base of a deep roasting tray ( 25cm x 30cm) slightly overlapping the slices. Roast the potatoes for 40 minutes or until lightly golden.
  6. While the potatoes are cooking pat dry the aubergines with paper towel and fry in batches in a little oil in a frying pan over high heat for a few minutes on each side until golden brown. Set aside once cooked. 
  7. Next make the white sauce; In a medium saucepan over medium heat , melt the butter, then stir in the flour to form a paste. Whisk in the milk a little at a time until you have a smooth white sauce. Season with salt and white pepper, a good grating of nutmeg or a healthy pinch of ground nutmeg, and add the remaining bay leaf. Simmer gently for 10 minutes, remove bayleaf, and allow to cool. This is important. 
  8. Once the white sauce has cooled, discard the bayleaf, whisk the lemon juice and zest with the 2 eggs and very slowly add to the white sauce whisking all the time.
  9. To assemble: yay finally!
    Spread half of the meat ragu over the potatoes, and then lay a single layer of aubergines. Repeat with the remaining ragu and another layer of aubergines. Gently pour over the white sauce, spread over evenly and crumble over the feta and pecorino. Drizzle with olive oil. 
  10. To Cook; preheat oven to 180oC and cook for 40 minutes until golden brown and bubbling. Remove and allow to rest for 30 minutes  – this is important as it allows the white sauce to settle and the meat to set in layers. 
  11. Serve . YUM! 

The recipe can be prepared ahead of time, up to step 9. Cover and refrigerate until cooking. 

 

PIN FOR LATER

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