I couldn’t have a gluten free greek blog without sharing my simple and tasty pastitsio recipe. Pastitsio is an Italian word, but the Greeks and Mediterranean’s all have their own variations.
This is a dish that my mum has made time and time again for family and friends who may not want to stuff their faces with souvlaki but still want a ‘little’ meat. The typical Greek ingredients for Pastitsio are pasta, cheese, egg, beef, veal or lamb with tomato and cinnamon, nutmeg or all spice and a top layer of sauce (usually a custard or a bechamel sauce). We don’t use egg in ours, but you could add it in with the pasta. So let’s get cooking, the way my mum makes it!
Recipe Instructions for Pastitsio. Serves 6-8.
You will need:
750g lean mince beef (or lamb if you prefer)
2 large white onions
500g gluten free pasta
cup of frozen peas
Gluten Free beef or lamb stock cube
500g carton of Pasata or tinned tomatoes
For béchamel sauce:
150g strong mature cheddar
500ml milk or cream or both
3 heaped tablespoons gluten free plain flour
1. Add mincemeat to half a pint of water. Cook until water has absorbed, but be careful not to burn.
2. Add half a pint of boiled water with a stock cube in it.
3. Add the tin of tomatoes, salt and pepper, oregano and a glass of red wine (optional)
4. Cook on a low heat so the meat absorbs the flavours. Top up with more water if needed.
5. Add the frozen peas (for the last 5 mins)
6. Cook and drain the pasta and set aside.
7. Place the butter, milk and flour on a low heat and keep stirring until it forms a smooth paste. Can use a hand whisk if required. You can add cheese to the sauce or keep for the top of the pastitsio.
8. In an ovenproof dish, place a layer of pasta, then meat, and continue until all ingredients have been used. Top with the béchamel sauce. You can make more béchamel sauce and top each layer if you wanted.
9. Cook for around 30-45 mins at 180°C until golden brown.
Enjoy with a GREEK salad!