Pastitsio, also known as pasticcio, is a fabulously tasty macaroni lamb bake. It is a like a Greek variation on macaroni cheese. This easy and yummy dinner is on the table within an hour. You can cook the meat the night before and it will be even faster.
PASTITSIO: GREEK PASTA BAKE
Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 1 hour
- 20ml (1 tbsp) of olive oil
- 1 onion, finely diced
- 500g / 1 lb of lamb mince
- ½ tsp of cinnamon ground
- ¼ tsp of nutmeg ground or finely grate 1/4 tsp of whole nutmeg
- ½ tsp of salt (iodised)
- 100g (4 tbsp) of tomato paste
- 200g of water
- 250g / 8 oz of macaroni
- a generous pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
- 50g of butter
- 50g of flour
- 750ml of milk
- ¼ tsp of salt
- Heat the oil in a medium to large saucepan, then cook the onion until soft.
- Add the lamb mince and stir to brown.
- Add the cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and tomato paste to the mince and cook for a few minutes, stirring continuously.
- Add the water, bring to the boil then simmer for 30–40 minutes.
- Cook the macaroni in a large saucepan of salted water (according to the packet’s instructions). Drain once cooked a set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 180˚C.
- To make the white sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan then add the flour. Cook for a few minutes.
- Gradually add the milk in small amounts, whisking continuously. Bring it back to the boil each time you add more milk.
- Once thickened, add the salt and continue to cook on a low heat for 5 minutes (this helps cook out the flour).
- Place the macaroni in the base of a baking dish (approx 30cm x 20cm).
- Add the meat mixture and spread evenly over the top of the macaroni.
- Pour the white sauce over the meat mixture, then sprinkle with nutmeg.
- Cook in the oven for 20 minutes.
- Serve immediately with a green salad.