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Pastitsio is a traditional Greek dish with oven baked pasta, meat sauce and bechamel. NOT vegan at all as it normally contains meat, milk, eggs and cheese. It's a very festive dish and makes a great centerpiece for holidays! This is my favorite vegan version of it and I always serve it during holidays for my guests. This recipe serves 8-10 people. For the bechamel you can either make a simple cream with soy milk and roux - just add salt, pepper and nutmeg or you can try my bechamel made of nuts and seeds.

Vegan Pastitsio

This Recipe is :

Dairy FreeVegan

Ingredients

  • 500 gr thick bucatini pasta (if you can’t find bucatini pasta try rigatoni or penne)
  • 2 TS bread crumbs

For the lentil sauce

  • 1 medium onion, thinly chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 cup homemade or canned tomato sauce or crashed tomatoes
  • 1 cup red lentil
  • 1 1/2 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 2 Tbsp fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped

For the bechamel

  • 120 gr raw cashews
  • 3 TS sunflower seeds
  • 2 TS nutritional yeast
  • 1 lt of water
  • 5 TS all purpose flour
  • 5 TS olive oil or vegan margarine/shortening
  • 1 ts salt
  • 1 ts freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 ts freshly ground black pepper

Preparation

To make the lentil sauce

  1. Place a medium pot with 1/4 cup of water over medium heat.
  2. Saute the onion and garlic until soft, about 4-5 minutes.
  3. Add all the other ingredients, except the parsley and cook for about 20 minutes.
  4. Add the parsley, lower the heat and cook for few more minutes, adding a bit of water if necessary.

To make the pasta

  1. Cook the pasta in salted boiling water until Al dente (be careful not to overcook the pasta as it will go in the oven for more baking).
  2. Drain and keep aside.
  3. Oil a baking dish and sprinkle with the bread crumbs.
  4. Add the pasta and top with the lentil sauce.  Preheat the oven to 180 C.

To make the bechamel

  1. Blend all ingredients – except the flour and oil -  in a high speed blender for at least two minutes.
  2.  In a pot make the roux. Heat the oil, add the flour and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly for 2 minutes.
  3. Pour cashews cream  into the roux, whisking constantly. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, over medium heat for about 5 minutes, until smooth and thick.
  4. Pour the cashews bechamel over the lentil sauce.
  5. Sprinkle with vegan cheese or breadcrumbs.
  6. Bake for 40 minutes until golden brown. Serve and enjoy!

 

 

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