Prep 1 hr
Cook 30 mins
This recipe is from my neighbor. She makes it every year for as part of their Greek Easter dinner. I think it is from Jeff Smith's Greek Cookbook. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! UPDATE: Feb. '14 This recipe is labor intensive. Have all your ingredients measured ahead of time. I think the original recipe has too much butter, resulting is a oily dish. I have revised the recipe decrease the butter amounts. Baking time is based on assembly and baking it immediately, while all ingredients are hot. I loosely covered with foil for half the baking time, then uncovered to brown up the top a bit, although beware, it may not brown much.
- 6 tablespoons butter, DIVIDED, I think 4 T would be more than enough
- 3⁄4 cup yellow onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 1⁄4 lbs lean ground beef, I used 1 #
- 1 (16 ounce) tomatoes, canned, peeled, mashed, do not drain
- 1⁄2 cup tomato sauce, canned
- 1⁄2 cup water, I omit
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄8 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1⁄8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 3⁄4 lb greek macaroni, # 2 long tubes, can use mini penne pasta
- 4 tablespoons butter, melted, 2 Tablespoon should be plenty
- 6 eggs, beaten
- 1 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 6 tablespoons butter, I use 4 T
- 6 tablespoons flour, I use 4 T
- 2 cups warm milk, I ended up using at least 3 cups
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 2 tablespoons dry sherry (optional)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1⁄2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
- 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
- 1 dash white pepper
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- In a large skillet: melt 2 T butter, add onion and garlic and saute' until golden.
- Add remaining butter and the crumbled ground beef. Cook until no longer pink.
- Add remaining ingredients to the meat mixture and simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes or until most of the liquid has been absorbed. Mixture should be thick; set aside.
- MAKE THE WHITE SAUCE:.
- Melt butter in a medium saucepan. Whisk in the flour and cook for a 60 seconds.
- Gradually add the warm milk, whisking constantly, cook until thick and smooth. Add remaining ingredients to the sauce. Continue to stir and cook over low heat until all is thickened. Add more milk if too thick.
- In a separate bowl, beat eggs and add 1/2 cup of the sauce to the eggs to temper them.
- Whisk the egg mixture into the saucepan until well blended.
- In the mean time, BOIL PASTA.
- In a large stock pot, add salt to boiling water;.
- Add macaroni, stir gently and cook uncovered until tender, per package suggestions.
- Drain and rinse under cool water.
- Drain well and place in a large bowl, add 1/4 C melted butter, nutmeg, sherry if using, beaten eggs and grated cheese.
- Put half of the noodle mixture into a greased 9x9x2 baking pan (I used 7x12 glass casserole) a arranging the long noodles the length of the pan in straight rows.
- Top with all of the meat mixture.
- Cover the meat with the remaining half of the noodles.
- Pour the white sauce over the macaroni and bake for 25 minutes or until the top is delicately browned. Bake longer if necessary to heat through.
- NOTE: If you prep this ahead, and do not bake immediately, add more baking time. If refrigerated: bring to room temperature for 1 hour, bake for 30- 45 minutes.
This is the best recipe I have found for Pastitso. My best friend's family was Greek and this tastes just like Yiayia used to make!
I love this dish. The nutmeg makes it outstanding. Sometimes I add chopped spinach, though I know this is not part of the authentic recipe. Yummy!