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Armenian   -   Butternut Moussaka   adapted from Please to the Table

  • 3 Medium Butternut Squash
  • 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 Medium Onion -- finely chopped
  • 1/3 Cup Pine Nuts
  • 1 1/2 Pounds Ground Beef
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
  • 1/4 Cup Beef Broth
  • 1 Large Tomato -- chopped
  • 1/4 Cup Dried Apricots -- chopped
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Cumin
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Allspice
  • 1/8 Teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 3 Tablespoons Parsley -- finely chopped
  • Salt And Pepper -- to taste
  • 5 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter -- chopped
  • 1 Cup Milk
  • 2 Tablespoons All-Purpose Flour
  • White Pepper -- to taste
  • 1/4 Cup Dry Bread Crumbs
  • 1/4 Cup Kefalotiri -- grated
Directions Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Butter 2 baking sheets. Cut squash in half and scoop out seeds. Place on baking sheets, cut side down. Bake until tender about 1 hour. Leave oven on. When squash is cool enough to handle. Peel off shells and cut pulp into slices 1/4 inch thick. Heat oil in a large heavy skillet. Saute onions and pine nuts, stirring until onion is soft but not brown about 8 minutes. Add ground beef, turn heat up to medium high and brown. Break up meat. Drain off all but 1 tablespoon of oil. Dilute tomato paste in broth, add to skillet along with tomato and apricots. Cook 8 minutes. Remove from heat, add cumin, allspice, cinnamon, parsley, salt and pepper. Butter a 14x9x2 inch baking dish. Arrange half of the squash slices in overlapping layer in bottom of baking dish. Sprinkle with salt and 3 tablespoons of butter. Spread meat mixture over squash. Top with remaining squash. Bake for 30 minutes. While moussaka is baking prepare sauce. In a small saucepan, bring milk to just b
oiling. Remove from heat. Melt remaining 2 tablespoons of butter over low heat in another pan, add flour, stir for 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Combine both pans and whisk until smooth. Add salt and white pepper to taste. Return to heat, simmer, stirring constantly for 10 minutes. Remove moussaka, increase oven temp to 375 degrees. Pour sauce evenly over moussaka. Sprinkle with bread crumbs and cheese. Bake 15 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand 5 minute before cutting into squares to serve.
Serves 6
Time to Make 0:00

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