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Frixos Personal Chefing

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Pastitsio Easter 2021, `Classic Pastitsio’

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Can’t remember any other celebration, especially Easter, that was celebrated in this manner. Coronavirus we will beat you!
It’s `just the few of us’, nevertheless we must treat us as in any other Easter. Besides the traditional Souvla, Pastitsio is a main dish in our Easter table. Few changes from the classic recipe and I am tempted to say that this is the one I like most and thus I will call it `Classic Pastitsio’!

Pastitsio Easter 2021, `Classic Pastitsio’

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Have a look below at the full recipe. Don’t forget, you can always print it.
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I hope you enjoy it!

Here you can find more of my Pasta Recipes.

Pastitsio Easter 2021, `Classic Pastitsio’

Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time1 hr 30 mins
Total Time2 hrs 30 mins
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Cypriot
Keyword: Food Recipes, Pasta, Pleasures
Servings: 12 People

Ingredients

For the Béchamel:

  • 1500ml Fresh Whole Milk
  • 200g Cheddar Cheese , mature, and a bit yellowish, grated
  • 50g Kefalotyri Cheese , grated
  • 150g all-purpose flour
  • 150g Butter , cubed at room temperature
  • 5 Egg Yolks , lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp Nutmeg , grated
  • 1 tsp Sea Salt
  • ½ tsp Freshlly ground White Pepper

For the Minced meat:

  • kg Pork Butt , double minced
  • 2 medium Yellow Onions , finely chopped
  • 600g Tomatoes , Cherry ones from a can or normal cubed tomatoes from a can, juice included
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste
  • 3 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 4 tbsp EVOO , Extra Virgin Olive Oil, plus more for the pasta
  • 1 tbsp Nutmeg , finely grated
  • 1 tsp All-Spice Berries , powder-grinded
  • cup ½Fresh Parsley , finely chopped
  • tbsp Sea Salt
  • ½ tbsp fresh ground Black Pepper

For the Pasta:

  • 800g Pastitsio pasta
  • 5 Litres Water
  • Sea Salt
  • 30g Parmigianno Reggiano , grated
  • 5 Litres Water
  • Sea Salt
  • 30g Parmigianno Reggiano , grated

Instructions

  • Start with the minced meat by placing a large and deep sauté pan over medium heat. Pour the 4 tbsp of oil and add the onions, sauté for 3-4 minutes until they become translucent.
  • Add the minced meat, increase the heat and continue sauteing until all the meat has been sautéed and a nice color has been achieved. Use a wooden spoon to break the big chunks of the minced meat.
  • Add the tomatoes, reduce the heat to low, add the Worcestershire sauce, the nutmeg, the all-spice powder, sea salt and pepper and stir for a minute or so. Add the tomato paste and simmer, with the lid on, while stirring for 10’ for all the ingredients to come together. 1’ before removing from the fire add the parsley and give it a good stir. Keep aside.
  • It’s time for the Pasta! In a Large pot bring water to a boil on high heat adding a generous amount of salt. Add the pasta, stirring occasionally so as not to stick and cook 2’ minutes less than package instructions. Strain, drizzle all-over them some olive oil and keep aside.
  • It’s Greek Béchamel time!! In a medium pot warm the milk on low heat. Keep aside.
  • In another medium non-stick pot over medium heat add the butter and whisk. Once melted and frothed start adding the flour and keep on whisking to be just enough thick, a nice roux and the flour smell has gone.
  • At this point start adding the warm milk, a bit at a time and keep on whisking. Halfway through add the nutmeg, salt and pepper and continue adding the milk and keep on whisking aiming to achieve a nice, not too runny cream.
  • Reduce the heat to low and cook while stirring frequently, while taking the pan off the heat add slowly the egg yolks while stirring vigorously. Then add slowly the cheddar cheese, if you add it altogether (the same applies for the egg yolks, there is a chance of them to curdle), and whisk until smooth, moving saucepan on and off heat to keep it hot enough to melt the cheese but not so hot that it bubbles rapidly. Keep aside and if not used immediately you can place a wrap film directly o the cream so that it doesn’t create any skin.
  • TO PUT EVERYTHING TOGETHER:
  • Preheat the oven to the 180°C, air circulation, rack in the middle.
  • In a large (~40cm) rectangular non-stick oven dish that deep enough (6-7 cm) add half the pasta and on top of them the grated kefalotyri cheese. Add the remaining pasta and on top of them a very small layer of the Béchamel cream while pressing lightly. Add the minced meat and with a wooden spoon spread evenly, pressing lightly.
  • Finally spread on top the Béchamel cream and spread all over. Sprinkle on top the grated Parmigianno Reggiano and cook for 45’ and until you get a nice golden and charred colour on the cream.
  • Take out of the oven and let rest for at least 30’, cut in squares and serve.
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