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Greek Pastitsio


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1st junior high school of Alexandria
eTwinning project: TASTY BITES

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Greek Pastitsio

  1. 1. a delicious Greek traditional dish INGREDIENTS For pastitsio we need • 1packet of pasta (macaroni) (500 gr), • 1 kg minced beef, • 1-2 medium onions (chopped), • 2 big ripe tomatoes (peeled and chopped), • 100 grams variety of cheese grated (little feta cheese too) • breadcrumbs (optionally), • olive oil (or butter), • salt, • pepper For the cream sauce (BESAMEL) we need 1 litter of milk, 6 spoonfuls butter, 9 spoonfuls flour corn flour is better), 2 spoonfuls cheese. 1
  2. 2. PREPARATION The first step in our cooking is the boiling of pasta. The pasta we need for this dish is a long type of macaroni with a big whole in the middle along its length. So we fill a big kettle with water and salt and let it boil. As soon as the water starts boiling we add the pasta. When the pasta is ready we drain the excessive water and add some butter so as not to have sticky macaroni. The second step in our cooking is the preparation of the minced beef. To start with we peel and chop an onion or two if they are small. We put some olive oil in a saucepan and add the chopped onion. After the onion has become golden brown we add the minced beef. We may add some water if necessary. We stir the minced beef along with the chopped tomatoes which have already been poured into the saucepan and then we add the salt (just a little) and the pepper. The minced beef starts to boil and it is ready after 30 minutes or so. After having finished these two steps in our preparation we start forming the final result. We use a large metal tray which we butter across the whole surface. We may use olive oil instead of butter as an alternative to spread to the bottom of the metal tray. Then we split the pasta in half. We spread half of the quantity at the bottom of the metal tray and then add the minced beef on top of the pasta in a second layer. On top of the minced beef we add the cheese and then the rest of the pasta (and again spread it across the whole surface). So far we have completed the basic part of this dish. What remains to be done is a kind of cream sauce which is called “besamel”. It is not difficult to make but it needs a little time. Firstly we mix the butter with the corn flour in a saucepan in medium heat. Then we add the hot milk and we mix the mixture constantly with a wooden spoon so as not to form knots. When the cream has a velvet texture we withdraw the saucepan from the heat. We can also add the yolk of an egg at the end of the preparation and mix well. Now the final step is at hand. We spread the besamel on top of the second layer of macaroni along the whole surface. We sprinkle some grated cheese and breadcrumbs (that makes a crispy and tasty crust on top. Finally you have 4 basic layers: pasta-minced beef-pasta-besamel. The food is ready for the oven. We bake the food in a moderate oven (180 OC) for about 30 – 40 minutes until the cream gets golden brown. 2
  3. 3. Then it is ready to serve. Try this delicious dish. It’s totally satisfactory to our taste but quite fattening as well. However, when you will visit GREECE, don’t miss the chance to taste our pastitsio. 3