Bechamel

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This is probably the most delicious pasta dish I have ever tried since I first came here in the Middle East. This is easy to prepare yet very nutritious pasta recipe. This dish brings back memory of the time when me and my friends were enjoying our last moments together at Bahrain International Hotel in Manama, Bahrain. Macaroni bechamel is very popular in Egypt and is exactly what the name says it is: macaroni in a bechamel sauce. It is basically a ground meat mixture between two layers of macaroni smothered in a creamy bachamel sauce. However, you can also mix the pasta and the cooked ground meat together and just top it with the bechamel sauce like this one. You can use any type of pasta you like although I prefer to use penne lisce. If you want your bechamel to be a little bit thicker I suggest you use a smaller baking dish. In this particular one, I use a bigger baking dish.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Difficulty: Medium
Ingredients:
•1 lb elbows, ziti, rigatoni or penne
•1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
•1 lb. lean ground beef
•1 medium onion chopped
•2 garlic cloves minced
•2 pieces bay leaves
•1/2 tsp black pepper (you may adjust according to your preference)
•3/4 tbsp salt (you may adjust according to your preference)
BECHAMEL SAUCE:
•4 tbsp. butter
•4 cups fresh milk
•1 egg beaten
•3/8 cups flour
•1 cube bouillon cube
•1/4 tsp white pepper
•1/2 cup grated mozzarella cheese
•1/2 cup cheddar cheese
Preparation:
•Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
•Prepare pasta according to the directions in the box. Avoid overcooking the pasta since you will bake it again in the oven. Set aside.
•Saute garlic in oil until soft. add onion and saute for another 2 minutes, then once beef is done browning, drain, and add bay leaves and black pepper and salt. Add the tomato sauce then simmer on low for 10 minutes. Add the cheddar cheese. Set aside.
PREPARE THE BECHAMEL SAUCE:
•Place the butter in a stainless steel sauce pan and heat over medium heat. Add the flour and stir until golden brown. Add the milk while stirring. Add the bouillon cube and white pepper. Keep stirring over medium heat until it thickens. Let the sauce boil gently over low heat for 2 minutes. Quickly whisk in the beaten egg and take out from the heat immediately.
ASSEMBLY:
•There  are two ways to prepare this: 1) you may layer half of the pasta then put the meat sauce on the middle then add the remaining pasta at the top; or 2) Mix the pasta and meat sauce just like I did in this particular recipe.
•Put the mixture in a baking dish. Spread the bechamel sauce and then sprinkle the mozzarella on top.
•Bake uncovered for 30 minutes or until top is golden brown.
•Allow to cool for 15 minutes before serving. Serve with a green salad or cauliflower patties.

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5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Cauliflower Au Gratin | what's for dinner
  2. Salve
    Dec 04, 2013 @ 23:38:29

    Thank you for sharing! I will definitely try your cauliflower au gratin with the bechamel sauce. Have a nice day to you.

    Reply

  3. Trackback: Bechamel | Dining with Salve
  4. cecilia
    Jan 01, 2014 @ 15:34:56

    sounds delicious and I adore the cutlery, beautiful.. c

    Reply

    • Salve
      Jan 01, 2014 @ 16:16:39

      Thank you so much for commenting. I wish you a blessed and a prosperous New Year! You have been one of my inspirations Ma’am!

      Reply

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