Greek meat and potatoes: leftover lamb moussaka

I’ve written before about the challenges of roasting a decent sized leg of lamb, then finding yourself lumbered with more leftovers than a few school sandwiches can handle. This is another way to use up a decent quantity of leftover roast lamb.

Moussaka is traditionally made with eggplant, or sometimes a combination of eggplant and potatoes. In this version, I’ve omitted the eggplant in favour of potatoes alone. In New Zealand, eggplants have a relatively short season, and sadly for me, that season is now at an end. So spuds it is.

Don’t worry, it still tastes great, and makes a pretty balanced meal served with a green salad on the side.


6 decent sized potatoes, sliced into 5mm slices, and cooked until just cooked (about 5 minutes in boiling salted water. Your choice whether you peel them or not. I didn’t)

Lamb Sauce

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped or crushed

1 tsp dried oregano

2 tsp dried mint

2 bay leaves

1 cinnamon stick

1/2 cup red wine

2 x 440g tins crushed tomatoes

750g roast lamb, chopped finely

Salt/pepper to taste

White Sauce

65g butter

40g flour

600ml milk

1 bay leaf

1 tsp nutmeg

Salt/pepper to taste

  1. Heat olive oil in a large, heavy based pan over a medium heat. Add onion and cook until soft.
  2. Add garlic, oregano, mint, bay leaves and cinnamon stick, and cook until fragrant.
  3. Pour over red wine and allow to bubble upp.
  4. Add tomatoes and lamb. Bring to the boil, then reduce to simmer, and cook until liquid has reduced and sauce is thick (about 40 minutes). Season to taste
  5. Heat oven to 200C
  6. To make the white sauce, bring the milk and bay leaf to just below boiling point.
  7. In a small saucepan, melt butter. Stir in flour and cook for 2 minutes.
  8. Pour in hot milk, whisking constantly to avoid lumps, then coontinue to whisk over medium heat until sauce is thick. Remove from heat and stir in nutmeg, and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Grease a large baking dish with olive oil. Layer half of the potato slices on the bottom of the dish, then pour over half of the lamb sauce. Repeat with another layer of potatoes, then lamb, then top with the white sauce.
  10. Bake in the oven for approximately 30 minutes, or until the top is golden.
  11. Remove from oven and serve.

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