Traditional Greek Recipes : Pastitsio

After reading many recipes for the traditional Greek pasta dish Pastitsio I came up with my own version. However, everyone who tried it agreed it tastes delicious.

Greek παστιτσιο, Pastitsio is a baked pasta dish with ground meat in tomatoes sauce and béchamel on top. This dish is found in Greek, Cypriot, Egyptian and Maltese cuisine. Though the word derives from the Italian pasticcio, meaning messy situation, it has evolved to a distinctive delicious dish.

Ingredients:

Bolognese style Sauce

1kg beef minced meat

2 onions chopped

2 garlic gloves

cinnamon, salt and pepper

1/2 wine glass Whiskey (Jack Daniels)

1 chopped carrot

1 can cherry tomatoes ( Kyknos)

1 can chopped tomatoes ( Pummaro Elais)

1 small spoon honey

5 teaspoons olive oil

Béchamel sauce 

12 teaspoons butter ( Lurpac soft)

12 teaspoons flour

1.5 lt milk

Corn flour ( just in case you need to make the sauce thicker)

Nutmeg

Parmesan cheese

2 Pasta for Pastitsio ( Barilla)

How to cook:

1.For the Bolognese sauce, start with slowly cooking over moderate heat the chopped onions, carrot and garlic with olive oil until the onion turns golden brown.

Then add the ground meat and cook without turning all the time. After the meat turns brown, add 1/2 wine glass of whiskey and stir for a minute. Then add the tomatoes and honey. Cook over moderate heat for 30-45 minutes. At the end add salt, pepper and cinnamon according to taste.

2. For the béchamel white sauce, start by warming the butter over very low heat and stir the flour until it becomes light golden. Warm the milk and add slowly stirring continuously until it becomes a thick sauce. If it’s not thick enough, which happened to me, add a spoon of corn flour diluted in half a glass of warm milk. Then season with salt, nutmeg and pepper.

For a lighter béchamel you could start with half the butter and flour and thicken the sauce with more corn flour.

3. Boil the pasta in a cooker for 7 minutes ( if the package says 8 minutes ). Then inside the strainer add 3 teaspoons butter, 5 teaspoons parmesan cheese, salt and pepper according to taste.

4. Use a large oven pan or a ceramic baker dish and add first the half the pasta, then the bolognese sauce, the pasta again and at the end the béchamel sauce which should create a layer. On top add some ground parmesan cheese.

5.Warm the oven 180 degrees and cook for 45-60 minutes until the top is golden brown.

6.Take out of the oven and let it cool for 30 minutes before serving.

Enjoy!!!


Have a lovely Day and thank you so much for reading!!!

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