This is a very easy recipe hailing from the Greek island of Corfu. A hearty beef stew served over bucatini pasta. Make a double batch of the stew either for the week or for the freezer. Delish!
What is Pastitsada?
Pastitsada, also known as Greek Corfu chicken, and sometimes known as Pastitsada from Kerkyra, is a classic Sunday night dinner. The tomato-based stew is usually made with beef and sometimes chicken. It is aromatic, comforting, and so flavorful. It is then topped over pastitsio noodles (bucatini pasta) but, you can definitely serve it over your favorite pasta.
Cinnamon is traditionally used in tomato-based sauces in Greek food. It adds warmth and pairs well with tomatoes. In this recipe, a few cloves and bay leaves are also added. I don’t add the cinnamon because the kids are not fans of it in savory food. It’s up to you. Either add a cinnamon stick, some ground cinnamon or leave it out if you’re not into it. Either way, it will be delicious.
What to serve with Pastitsada
Pastitsio noodles (bucatini) are traditionally served with the stew. The beef stew is hearty and rich and pairs well with a light pasta. Since the noodles are hollow in the center, they end up being very light. My kids prefer spaghetti and even linguini. However, feel free to use your favorite pasta. Penne would be great too.
How to make the meal ahead
Double or even triple the batch of stew. Especially if you’re making it with beef. You can certainly do this with chicken as well but, making extra large batches of chicken stew can be tricky. I like to use beef stew meat for this recipe. It takes 2 hours to cook but it is less expensive than other cuts and I love how hearty the stew is with that cut of meat. Of course, you may use lamb instead.
The beef stew keeps fresh in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5-6 days. You may also freeze it for up to 2-3 months. When you’re ready to serve it, that it overnight in the refrigerator and warm it through in a pot with a cup of water. taste and adjust the seasonings and garnish with some fresh parsley.
You can honestly serve this stew with anything: rice, toasted hearty bread, salad, or pasta.
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- 2 pounds boneless beef cubes
- 1 pound pastitsio noodles (bucatini)
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 2 onions, finely chopped
- 3-4 garlic cloves, grated
- 1 (16 oz) can tomatoes, pureed
- 1 cup of water
- 1/4 teaspoon (or more) crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 Bay leaf
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
- 2-3 whole cloves
- salt and black pepper to taste
- Grated Parmesan cheese or kefalograviera, grated
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
Heat the olive oil in a pot. Brown the beef in a few batches for 3-4 minutes. Set aside in a plate/bowl.
Add the onions to the pot and cook over medium heat for 5-6 minutes.
Add the garlic and warm through for a few seconds.
Add the beef cubes back to the pot with the remaining ingredients except for the parsley and cheese.
Bring to a boil and reduce the heat to medium. Cover the pot and cook until the beef is tender and the sauce has thickened. About 1 and 1/2-2 hours. Stir the stew often and add more water if it thickens too much before the beef is ready.
Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.
Cook the pasta according to the package instructions and drain. Toss with butter.
Garnish with parsley and serve over pasta. Top with plenty of grated cheese. Enjoy!
Make-Ahead Instructions: The beef stew keeps fresh in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5-6 days. You may also freeze it for up to 2-3 months. When you're ready to serve it, that it overnight in the refrigerator and warm it through in a pot with a cup of water. taste and adjust the seasonings and garnish with some fresh parsley.
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