April 18, 2015

Greek Pastitsio

Yum
On the Menu Today~
Welcome To Recipes Inspired
From Around The World.
Country: Greece
Recipe: Pastitsio


Serve Pastitsio with small glasses of Ouzo~
Ouzo is an anise flavored colorless Greek liqueur.
'Opa!'

Traditional Specialties~

Ouzo: 
Ouzo is the most famous Greek alcohol beverage, the trademark of the country. 
It is a strong alcohol drink, 
drinkable straight with ice or with a bit of water. 
Ouzo happens to be my personal favorite:) 
The best ouzo is made in Lesvos and 
the famous trades are Ouzo Plomariou and Barbayanni.
Greece is also know for Wine.
For a list of fantastic Greek Wines go to: Greek Wines

Herbs: 
Famous herbs of great quality are easy to find in Greece. 
They are: chamomile, sage, basil, mint, parsley, tilio, and oregano. 
Greek spices are: white sesame, cumin, machlepi and red saffron.

Olive oil: 
You can not mention Greece with out mentioning Olive Oil.


Read all about it here: Olive Oil

Greek Mezedes~ (appetizers)
1. Saganaki: Fried Cheese, many varieties of cheese is used. Excellent with a zest of lemon.
2. Keftedakia: Fried meatballs of beef, garlic and bread

Greek Salads~ 
1. Horiatiki Salata: Is a mix of fresh tomatoes, olives, cucumbers, onions, green pepper,feta cheese,
olive oil and oregano.

Main Dishes~
1. Moussaka: Made of potatoes, topped with eggplants, onions, minced beef and bechamel sauce.
2. Pastitsio: Consists of spaggeti #2, topped with minced beef, onions, tomatoes and bechamel sauce.

Soups~
1. Fassolada: White bean soup
2. Patsa: Tripe Soup 

What is Pastitsio?


Pastitsio is a baked pasta dish enjoyed in Greece and
throughout the Mediterranean and Middle East.
Pastitsio is the Greek version of Comfort Food~


This dish is versatile and
many different versions exist.
The typical Greek version consists of a thick, tube-like pasta such as:
bucatini, penne or any other type of a short, thick, tube-shaped pasta.
The pasta is baked with two sauces:
a red meat sauce made with tomatoes and spices and
a creamy white sauce such as a bechamel sauce.
Ingredients are layered together in a baking dish and
baked in the oven.

The word "pastitsio" is a Greek variation on the Italian word "pasticcio"
meaning a hodgepodge of different ingredients baked together in a single dish.


Even within Greece,
many versions of pastitsio exist.
Some recipes include ground lamb in the red/meat sauce,
while some use ground beef.
Cinnamon, allspice and/or nutmeg are
commonly added to the meat sauce.

The white sauce used to top the pastitsio,
is often a bechamel sauce or white sauce made
with milk and a light colored roux.
Some recipes call for a mornay sauce,
a variation on bechamel sauce
that includes grated cheese.


Greek Pastitsio~
Greek immigrants brought the recipe for this layered
lamb-and-pasta casserole with them from the old country.
Serve with a green salad and a loaf of rustic bread.
Absolutely Delicious~



Greek Pastitsio

Ingredients
  • 6 ounces bucatini pasta
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese, cubed
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 12 ounces lean ground lamb
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can tomatoes, undrained and cut-up
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon each salt and pepper
  • 2/3 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Cooking Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350°
  2. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, rinse and drain again. 
  3. Transfer to a warm bowl.
  4. Separate the eggs. 
  5. In a small bowl, lightly beat the yolks. Set aside for white sauce.
  6. Stir egg whites, feta cheese and 1/4 cup milk into the pasta. Set aside.
  7. Prepare the red/meat sauce. Cook the lamb and onion over medium high heat until meat is browned. Drain off fat. Stir in the tomatoes, oregano, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer, covered for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in 2/3 cup Parmesan cheese
  8. Layer half of the pasta mixture in a lightly greased 8 x 8 x 2 baking dish. Top with meat sauce and then with the remaining pasta mixture.
  9. Prepare the white sauce. In a medium saucepan, whisk together 1 1/2 cups milk, flour, salt and pepper. Cook over moderate heat, whisking constantly for 8 minutes or until mixture is thickened and bubbly. Slowly stir about 1 cup of the hot mixture into the lightly beaten egg yolks, then return this mixture to the saucepan. Cook stirring constantly, for 3 minutes or until mixture thickens. (Do not boil) Stir in the 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Pour the sauce over the pasta layer.
  10. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until heated through.
  11. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.


















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