How to make Pastitsio!
Pastitsio - Makaronia tou fournou
Pastitsio is a well known Greek dish. It has been mostly popular in Cyprus where it is referred to as “makaronia tou fournou” meaning “oven pasta”.
The dish is consisted of a pasta layer, covered with a mince layer which is topped up by another pasta layer and finally a béchamel cream on top. There are numerous variations of this recipe; this hub will therefore introduce you to my own Pastitsio recipe.
© All Rights Reserved - Chris Achilleos
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What is Halloumi?
Halloumi is a traditional Cypriot white cheese. It is usually made of goat’s milk or sheep milk however, cows milk or a combination of these may also be used to make halloumi.
- 400 g Tomato Passata
- 250 g Pork Mince
- 250 g Penne Rigate Pasta
- 100 g Cheddar Cheese, Grated
- 50 g Halloumi Cheese, Grated
- 50 g Feta Cheese, Grated or Crumbled
- 1 Medium sized onion, Chopped
- 3 eggs, Separate yolks from whites
- 2 cups Milk
- 2 Tablespoons Plain flour
- 2 ½ Teaspoons Salt
- 2/3 Teaspoon Ground white pepper
- 1 Tablespoon Vegetable oil
- 1 Tablespoon Pure lemon juice
- ½ Teaspoon Dry Basil leaves
- ½ Teaspoon Cinnamon, powder
- ½ Teaspoon Sugar
- ½ Tablespoon Butter
Instructions for the pasta:
- Boil 1 Litre of Water and add ½ teaspoon salt.
- Once boiling hot add in the pasta to cook for approximately 15 minutes (Stir thoroughly to avoid getting the pasta stuck together)
- When ready drain the water and add ½ spoon butter to the pasta
- Then mix the egg whites with the drained and buttered pasta
Instructions for the mince:
- While the pasta is cooking fry the chopped onion until there is a light golden color
- Add the mince in and stir thoroughly for about 5 minutes, (until the mince color changes).
- Then add in 1 ½ teaspoon salt, the white pepper and the basil.
- Now stir in a tablespoon of pure lemon juice followed by the tomato passata.
- Leave it on the heat for approximately another 10 minutes.
- When the mince is cooked remove from heat.
*Note for chili lovers*
I love chili so I usually add crushed chilies to the mince of my Pastitsio. Therefore, I would strongly recommend adding some crushed chilies for a hot bite!
How to separate the egg white and yolk!
Instructions for the Béchamel cream
- If you haven't done so yet, now is a good time to separate the yolks and whites of the eggs (the yolks will be used for the cream whereas the whites should be mixed in your drained pasta)
- Place the milk in a saucepan to heat up (gas mark 4).
- While on the heat mix the 3 egg yolks with the milk.
- When hot add in the flour, feta, halloumi and cheese.
- Continue mixing until a thick creamy texture is formed (stir thoroughly to avoid burning the cream)
- Finally stir in the salt, sugar and ¼ teaspoon cinnamon.
- Now take the cream off the heat.
Pre-cooking step by step photo instructions!
Pre cooking Instructions
1. Evenly place half of your cooked pasta in an oven pan.
2. Spread the mince, evenly, on top of the pasta layer.
3. Then add the rest of your cooked pasta on top of the mince, forming again an even layer.
4. Following add the cream on top of the pasta.
5. Before placing this in the oven, be sure to add some grated cheese as well as a pinch of cinnamon on top of the cream.
- Preheat your oven at 170º.
- Then cook for approximately 20 minutes.
- When ready allow the pastitsio to cool down for 5 minutes before cutting and serving.
Other Greek Recipes by Chris Achilleos
- Mediterranean Mashed Potatoes Recipe
Mediterranean Mashed Potatoes recipe with garlic and oregano. How to make it from scratch!
- Avgolemono - A traditional Greek soup!
How to make Avgolemono, or in other words Avgolemoni, a Greek traditional soup!
- Spanakopita: How to make Spinach and Feta Pie
This is an easy Spinach and Feta Pie recipe. Spinach and Feta Pie is a traditional dish in Greece and Cyprus. It's Greek name is 'Spanakopita'!
There are many different variations of making Pastitsio. Therefore this is my own personal recipe for this dish. It has not been copied from a cook book or any other source.
Any unauthorized reprint is prohibited unless you have my permission to do so. For details contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
© 2013 All Rights Reserved – Chris Achilleos