Recipe: Aglaia's Yogurt and Olive Oil Béchamel Sauce

Moussaka has a lush topping of béchamel sauce—or "cream", as it is often called. My light olive oil béchamel is pleasantly tangy, as I substitute yogurt for part of the milk.

    • 4 tablespoons olive oil
    • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
    • 1 1/2 cups full-fat plain yogurt
    • 1 cup grated aged cheddar or Gruyère cheese, plus more for sprinkling the top
    • salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Whisk together the olive oil and flour, over moderate heat until frothy, about one minute. Remove from the heat, whisk a bit longer and add the cold milk and yogurt. Cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly, and don't worry if the mixture looks lumpy. It will become smooth as it cooks and thickens. When it starts to boil, remove from the heat and stir in the cheese, salt, and pepper.

To read Aglaia's story about the history of modern Green dishes like moussaka, click here. Or click here to see her recipe for moussaka, of which this sauce is an integral part.

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Aglaia Kremezi writes about food in Greek, European, and American magazines, publishes books about Mediterranean cooking in the U.S. and Greece, and teaches cooking classes. More

Aglaia Kremezi has changed her life and her profession many times over. She currently writes about food in Greek, European and American magazines, publishes books about Greek and Mediterranean cooking in the US and in Greece, and teaches cooking to small groups of travelers who visit Kea. Before that she was a journalist and editor, writing about everything, except politics. She has been the editor in chief and the creator of news, women's, and life-style magazines, her last disastrous venture being a "TV guide for thinking people," a contradiction in terms, at least in her country. She studied art, graphic design, and photography at the Polytechnic of Central London. For five years she taught photography to graphic designers while freelancing as a news and fashion photographer for Athenian magazines and newspapers. Editors liked her extended captions more than the pieces the journalists submitted for the events she took pictures for, so she was encouraged to do her own stories, gradually becoming a full time journalist and editor. You can visit her website at www.keartisanal.com.


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