The famous Pastitsio
1 hour 5 minutes
This yummy baked pastitsio recipe is a 3-layered Greek delicacy. It has the cheesy bucatini pasta at the base, topped with the pan-cooked meat sauce for the second layer. The third layer is the creamy, luscious bechamel finished with a sprinkle of grated Kefalotyri cheese!
This Mediterranean-inspired yummy baked pastitsio recipe is a must-have if you crave a rich meaty lasagna!
3-4 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
900g | 6 cups of minced lean beef
2 garlic cloves (minced)
2 medium-sized red onions (chopped finely)
2/3 cup dry red wine
1 tbsp tomato paste
425g | 1 can of crushed tomatoes
1 bay leaf
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon (optional)
A pinch of ground clove
1 tsp sea salt (or to taste)
1 tsp crushed black pepper (or to taste)
1/2 cup butter
1 cup all-purpose flour (or the Jotis bechamel ready mix)
1 liter milk (lukewarm)
2/3 cup Kefalotyri cheese (or Parmesan) (divided)
A pinch of nutmeg
2 egg yolks
450g pastitsio No 2 pasta
1 cup feta cheese (crumbled)
2 egg whites
For the meat sauce
For pasta base
To prepare the meat sauce
Place a large saucepan over high heat. Drizzle the oil and let it heat for a minute.
Add the minced meat, break it down, and spread it across the pan. Fry for 15-20 minutes by stirring frequently till the meat browns.
Now, reduce the heat to medium, make a space in the center, and add the chopped onions, followed by the minced garlic. Stir cook for 2-3 minutes in the center and then mix it with the meat.
Pour in the red wine and cook for 2-3 minutes till it evaporates.
Now, add the tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, bay leaf, sugar, cinnamon, clove, salt, & pepper. Mix well, cover the saucepan, and reduce heat to low. Simmer for 45-50 minutes while stirring at 10-15 minutes intervals or until all the liquid is absorbed/evaporated.
Remove the lid & place the saucepan on the kitchen top to cool completely.
To prepare the Bechamel
Firstly, let the butter melt in a heavy-bottomed pot placed on the stove over medium heat.
Add the flour or the bechamel ready mix and whisk for 1-2 mins to form a smooth paste-like consistency.
Now, slowly pour the milk while stirring continuously to avoid any lump formation. Let the milk thicken for 5 minutes while whisking regularly.
Remove the pot from heat. Then, stir in the nutmeg and 1/3 cup of the grated cheese.
In a bowl, add the egg yolks and whisk it with a ladle of the slightly cooled bechamel.
Then, stir the egg yolk mix into the bechamel pot and whisk thoroughly till nicely combined.
To prepare the pasta
Boil the pasta as per package instructions, just 2-3 minutes lesser. Drain the liquid and let cool for 3-4 minutes.
Mix the egg whites, followed by the crumbled feta cheese. Combine well.
Set the oven for preheating at 350° F.
Transfer the pasta to the baking dish (13x9x3 inches size).
Add the meat sauce on top, spread it out evenly, and flatten it.
Then, pour the bechamel all over and smoothen it.
Sprinkle 1/3 cup of the grated Kefalotyri cheese.
Place the baking dish into the preheated oven. Bake for 45 minutes at 350 F till the top turns golden.
- Lastly, let the pastitsio cool before cutting it to serve.
- In this yummy baked pastitsio recipe, the minced meat is added to the pan before the onions & garlic. This allows the meat to brown nicely without overcooking the onions.
- Tampering the egg yolks is necessary to save the bechamel from curdling.
- Serving Size
- 1 serving
- per serving
- 36.25 grams
- 31.2 grams
- 65.05 grams
- 7.5 grams
- 10 grams
- 716 milligrams