pasta

Good Fod Friday : vegetarian pastitsio

Now I’m not sure if you are in the practice of sacrificing for Lent but I was interviewed this week by the Neos Kosmos who asked me what the benefits of fasting (aka cleansing) can be. We all know I’m no stranger to a cleanse – the benefits of refraining from foods that are acidic forming in the body can be outstanding. By eating alkaline foods, we eat as closely to nature as possible, without inclusion of foods that are difficult to digest or lead to toxic build up to the body. Small amounts of foods that are considered acid forming are ok – but when we consume large amounts our gut finds it really hard to clean itself out. Most of the recipes I share for good food friday treats are vegetarian and, and very often vegan. I prefer to stick to gluten free eats although this week I’m slightly bending the rules. In any case – my recipes are mostly alkaline and great for not just your body (and fertility) but your heart and soul.

Enjoy this delicious dish – fasting or not it’s a winning combo!

If you are unfamiliar with what pastitsio is – it is the greek version of lasagne. It is a household favourite in this dwelling.

Vegetarian pastitsio

1 onion diced
2 carrots diced
2 celery sticks diced
3 tomatoes chopped
6 large mushrooms chopped
1 can of lentils, rinsed and drained
1/4 bunch of parsley chopped
2 cups of vegetable stock
4 cups of gluten free penne pasta
olive oil
parmesan cheese (approx 1 cup)

Béchamel sauce
2tbs butter
2tbs flour
500ml warm milk (I used bonsoy)

Method

Dice and add all veggies to a large pot with a small amount of oil – approx 2 tbs. Stir and cook until onion is clear.
Add stock, parsley, salt and pepper and stir well to combine.
Allow to cook, simmering for 45 minutes or until most of the liquid is gone.
Add lentils and cook for a further 5 minutes.
At this point cook the pasta as directed and once al dente, remove, drain and place in the bottom of a large baking dish. Stir through a small amount of oil to prevent sticking. Sprinkle 1/2 of the parmesan over the pasta.

To make the béchamel sauce place butter in a small saucepan and allow to melt. Add flour and stir well. Finally, slowly add the milk, stirring continuously with a whisk. Continue to stir until sauce thickens (approx 5 – 10 minutes). Season to taste.

Layer the lentil mix over the top of the pasta. Finally layer the béchamel sauce. Sprinkle with remaining parmesan and cook in a moderate oven (180 degrees) until top browns – approximately 10 – 15 minutes.

Enjoy garnished with parsley and serve with a greek salad to match.

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