Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Moussaka (Page 514)

  • Date: Friday, October 27, 2006 - 9pm
  • Location: Somerville, MA
  • Kitchen: My Apartment
  • Fellow Chef: Matty
  • Recipe Rating: B
I picked this one for dinner on Friday because I wanted to make something that would produce leftovers that would freeze well. This Moussaka was pretty good. The ground lamb sauce was very tasty, and the broiled eggplant was cooked perfectly for this sort of dish. The best component though was the feta cheese sauce, which was flavorful and complemented the rest of the dish well. The biggest problem with this dish, which Matt articulated and I agreed to, was that it didn't really taste like Moussaka. In other words, the Greek flavors didn't come through too clearly. There was quite a bit of cinnamon and allspice in the lamb mixture, but both were very hard to taste in the end product. It's possible, of course, that I just didn't add enough salt -- I don't know. That said, we both enjoyed eating it. It was a good dish, but perhaps not a good example of a Moussaka recipe.

First off, congrats to Ricky who passed his quals yesterday! Yay! A bunch of us went out to dinner last night to celebrate, as is the tradition after someone passes their qualifying exam. Quals in the MIT math department are a bit painful (maybe Ph.D. qualifying exams everywhere, in every department are painful!). It's pretty rare that someone fails, but nonetheless the whole exercise is a little excrutiating. You pick a major topic and two minor topics, and for each of your three topics, you select a professor to examine you. In general your major examiner is the person who will become your thesis advisor. Then, on the day of your quals, you stand at a chalkboard in front of the three professors and attempt to answer whatever they ask you. It's not really a pleasant experience. This goes on for usually about an hour or an hour and a half (although there have been 3 hour exams...). Then your committee confers and decides whether you have passed. I was terrified before (and during) my quals, and I had some of the nicest people in the world on my committee! It's just a scary, scary thing. But when it's over, it is such a wonderful relief!

Congrats again to Ricky!!!

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