Moussaka (also Mousaka) stands with gyros
and souvlaki as one of the world-famous
dishes of Greek cuisine. It’s a very
rare restaurant on Crete that does not offer moussaka.
The moussaka is made in a large dish which holds enough portions for several
people, baked in an oven then cut into portions. In the last few years there has
also been a growing trend to make individual sized portions in special pots
which are attractive to look at.
Moussaka consists of several layers, of which the aubergine layer is the most
important and tasty. Other layers include minced meat with onions, potatoes and
sometimes courgettes. The top layer is made from béchamel which forms a golden
crust when baked.
There are some variations on the classic moussaka. The ‘Zucchini Moussaka’
(courgettes in place of aubergines) is rare, but can be found. Some tourist
restaurants offer a vegetarian moussaka in which the mince is replaced with
vegetarian meat substitutes. New ideas in recent years have been the potato
moussaka, chicken moussaka, fish moussaka and calamari moussaki. These are not
traditional recipes, but may be of interest to the moussaka enthusiast.
Moussaka is a cheap meal on Crete, which always comes with bread. The best
moussakas are served outside tourist areas in simple, traditional tavernas.
Generally a portion will cost €5-6.
Moussaka is also known in Bulgaria: there it is prepared with potatoes rather