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Pastitsio Pie My Way


2     tablespoons (30 mL) butter
2    tablespoons (30 mL) flour
1    cup (250 mL) milk
1     cup (250 mL) cottage cheese
1     egg, beaten
Pinch each of nutmeg, salt and pepper

1    tablespoon (15 mL) butter, divided
1    onion, chopped
3    garlic cloves, finely chopped
11/2    pounds (750 g) lean ground beef
1/2    teaspoon (2 mL) dried oregano
1/2    teaspoon (2 mL) ground cinnamon
1/2    teaspoon (2 mL) salt
1/4    teaspoon (1 mL) pepper
1    can (14-ounce/398 mL) stewed tomatoes, chopped
1     can (5.5-ounce/156 mL) tomato paste
1     tablespoon (15 mL) red wine vinegar
1/4    cup (50 mL) fresh chopped parsley
3    cups (750 mL) zucchini, shredded (about 3 medium)
1    cup (250 mL) fresh grated parmesan cheese


Prepare sauce: In a saucepan, melt butter over medium heat until bubbly. Add flour and cook, whisking for about 2 minutes to remove raw taste of flour. Slowly add milk; cook until thickened. Remove from heat and add cottage cheese, egg and spices. Set aside.

In a large frying pan, cook onion and garlic in 11/2 teaspoons (7 mL) butter. Stir in beef, oregano, cinnamon, salt and pepper; cook until meat is no longer pink. Drain off fat.
Stir in tomatoes, tomato paste and vinegar. Cook for 3 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in parsley; set aside.
Lightly grease a 10-inch (25 cm), deep pie plate with remaining 11/2 teaspoons (7 mL) butter. Drain the shredded zucchini and spoon half into the pie plate. Spread with meat mixture, then layer 1/3 of the parmesan cheese, and remaining zucchini.
Cover with sauce and top with remaining 2/3 of parmesan. Place dish on a baking sheet and bake at 350°F (180°C) for 50 to 60 minutes, or until golden brown.

Makes 6 servings.

Pastitsio Pie My Way

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