Serbian Ground Beef, Veggie, and Potato Bake Recipe Reviews - Allrecipes.com (Pg. 1)
Reviewed: Jun. 10, 2011
Being from former Yugoslavia myself, I can tell you that you are on the right track with this dish - it's called a mussaka. Anyway, what you are missing is a layer of potatoes in the middle. The original dish is layered so that you first put a layer of potatoes on the bottom, than a layer of meat, a layer of potatoes in the middle, than another layer of meat, than top it off with another layer of potatoes. Otherwise, the dish would be too heavy on the meat side. Also, there is an allspice that is greatly used in that region, which adds a specific taste to the original dish. The spice is called "vegeta" and you can find it in many international markets. If you make it without that spice, make sure to add some spices to the potatoes before you layer them. I usually add salt, pepper, paprika and some parsley. Enjoy!
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Reviewed: Jan. 20, 2005
The taste of the meat/veggie mixture alone merits 5 stars definitely...but there was something starchy lacking in this dish. Despite layering the potatos on top & bottom, there was still an overabundance of meat. (While we all like meat, we ended up having to heat up so leftover rice to accompany the dish.) Some nice ideas might be to serve it with egg noodles, rice or to use MUCH more potato (and perhaps mix the potatos in with the meat prior to baking?) On a separate note, I would definitely recommend including the ground cloves. I'm not a huge "clove" fan either, but I used it anyway and the result was fantastic! (If you are still wary, try a dash instead of a pinch...trust me, your taste buds will thank you.) Again, a thoroughly tasty dish which everyone loved...just lacking some starch accompaniment.
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Photo by Marlowe'sMum

Cooking Level: Intermediate

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Reviewed: Jan. 30, 2008
Wonderful -smells at 6 stars - even better than it tastes at 5 stars. Use very lean ground beef. Add two cloves garlic, part with the ground beef to be ground, part with the vegetables when cooked. Add 2.5 times potatoes - about 1/2 chopped in smallish cubes in the mix of ground beef and vegetables, plus bit more spices and wine. I simply pushed the ground beef to the side after browning and cooked the vegetables on the other side of the pan... YUM -This left the most wonderful taste in our mouths for over an hour afterwards and made the whole house smell good.
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Reviewed: Jan. 7, 2008
This recipe doesn't have that WOW factor, but it is interesting. Interesting good I would say. It is quick to make...I had it in the oven within 20 minutes. I did make a few changes. I didn't bother with the olive oil, because the dripping from the beef were sufficent to do the vegetables. I cut the black pepper down to 1/4 tspn and reduced the red pepper flakes to a pinch based on the reviews I read that the dish was spicy. Even with those reductions the dish had plenty of spice, but also stayed "kid friendly" for my 4 and 6 year old. I also doubled the salt and added garlic powder. The 2 tblsn of half and half cream you add at the end of preperation seemed not to really contribute any real taste or texture ( cream-like )quality to the dish, so when I make this again, I will probably omit it. Also next time I make this recipe I will add more potatos, because the ratio potatos/meat is heavily on the meat side. I think I will cube 1 or 2 potatos mixing it up with the beef and still using sliced potatos for the top and bottom.
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Photo by Chuck Sampson

Cooking Level: Expert

Living In: Anchorage, Alaska, USA
Reviewed: Feb. 15, 2008
I REALLY liked this one! There is so much flavor to it! The only thing I left out was the celery since the poor stuff was quite wilted and sick looking in my fridge! (It did go straight into the trash by the way!!!) Anyway....I added a touch more red wine, I chooped baby carrots instead of shredding one, 4 potatoes and a little extra cinnamon. There is something so devine about mixing beef with flavors like cinnamon...I love it! Hubby is a huge meat and potatoes kind of guy and he went to town on this dish! There weren't any leftovers! This will be a regular at my house....but will be known as the garbage dish.....I had part of a pepper, part of an onion, a small amount of red wine from the night before, potatoes that needed to be used up.....and this dish used up all the leftover stuff so I didn't have to toss it! Great flavor! Thanks for sharing!
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Reviewed: Jul. 17, 2007
We don’t mix milk w/ meet but all ingredients (minus the ½ & ½) really appealed to me & took a chance. Very glad we did. For those of you w/ the same food laws (or wish to make this a little less caloric… ), we increased the wine & water by 1/4c. We sautéed all vegetable prior to browning meet. Other than the mentioned changes, we followed the recipe as written. Something different using grounds meet. Thanks!
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: White Oak, Pennsylvania, USA
Living In: Westminster, Maryland, USA

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Reviewed: Dec. 10, 2007
This was really, really good and best of all I had every thing in my pantry. It reminded me of Greek mousaka with the cinnamon, nutmeg and ground beef. It was interesting, but in a good way. There were a couple of things I did a little different from the original recipe. I browned the beef and then put the veggies and seasonings in (I would have liked to have figured out how to do it in one pan, but didn't want to press my luck). I couldn't figure out why you needed to take the beef out or add the extra oil. It turned out just fine. Next time I would only use one rib of celery and cut it up fine since my onion and red pepper (didn't have green) were chopped up fine. I also didn't have any half and half, but I had sour cream and I added 2 tablespoons and it was fine. This was fast and easy and tastey. This is a keeper. Thanks for sharing!
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Photo by SWEETJAM

Cooking Level: Expert

Living In: Tempe, Arizona, USA
Reviewed: Sep. 28, 2004
This was a wonderfull treat! The recipe as presented is perfect! Being the cook that I am, I added some sweet italian sausage meat, garlic & mushrooms. A "warm you inside and out" kind of meal .. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
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Photo by CaptainLadyG

Cooking Level: Expert

Home Town: Willimantic, Connecticut, USA
Living In: Ashford, Connecticut, USA

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Photo by MomZilla (Evin)
Reviewed: Sep. 18, 2009
Wish there was a 10 star option!! I didn't have high hopes for this - it's a casserole, for cryin' out loud - but between my 4 year old and myself, we finished the whole pan! I made some MINOR changes - I added a drizzle of honey after I mixed the veggies, meat, and spices for a touch of sweet, and I added a drizzle of cream to the bottom of the casserole dish before i layered the potatoes and then antoher drizzle to the top layer of taters, just so they'd get soft. Also seasoned the taters w/ salt and pepper. Word of warning - once you take the first scoop out, it starts to look kinda gross.. doesn't matter! Tastes SO GOOD!
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Photo by MomZilla (Evin)

Cooking Level: Intermediate

Living In: Austin, Texas, USA
Reviewed: Jan. 21, 2011
I made this last night almost exactly as written (I only had a few strips of red and yellow pepper-no green, I probably used slightly more than a "pinch" of cinnamon and cloves and I put a potato layer in the middle). We thought it was really good. Last night for supper I thought that I had used too much cloves but today the leftovers at lunch tasted perfect. My 3 year old didn't like it but that was not too surprising as he doesn't like a lot of meat. My husband is generally a picky eater and he had seconds.
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Cooking Level: Intermediate

Home Town: Madison, Indiana, USA
Living In: Bloomington, Indiana, USA

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