Low Carb Spaghetti Squash Pastitsio

PastitsioThis is Greek food at its best. If you have never had Pastitsio (and most people have not) you are in for a real treat and the good news is, if you have never had it made with long tubular ziti (the pasta in the picture) then you have nothing to compare it with. Coupled with a Greek Salad/Creamy Feta Dressing you have a perfectly terrific all inclusive meal.

I have taken the basic recipe from here http://www.sheepscreek.com/recipes/pastitsio.html and as far as I can tell this is the only authentic recipe on the internet.  I replaced the pasta with spaghetti squash, and tweaked the sauces. Years ago, the first time I made this I followed the exact recipe using whole eggs in the thick sauce. What a disaster and really, I should have known. When you cook whole eggs, duh, they scramble. All was not lost as I just strained the sauce which worked beautifully and now of course I use just the yolks.

As I am a Type II diabetic, all recipes on this website are low carb and diabetic friendly.

Spaghetti Squash Pastitsio
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Thin Sauce Ingredients
  1. 1 Cup Heavy Cream
  2. 1 Egg Yolk
Thick Sauce Ingredients
  1. 2 Cups Heavy Cream
  2. 4 Egg Yolks
Main Ingredients
  1. 1 Sm. Spaghetti Squash (about 2 cups cooked)
  2. ¾ C Diced Onions
  3. ¾ lb. Ground Lamb (you may use beef but it is not as good and not authentic)
  4. ½ t Cinnamon (or a little more if you like)
  5. ¼ t Salt
  6. ¼ t Pepper
  7. ¼ t Grated Nutmeg
  8. 1T Crushed Garlic
  9. 1 Cn Diced Tomatoes
  10. 3 T Tomato Paste
  11. 1 t Dried Oregano
  12. 1C Bread Crumbs (I make bread crumbs from the Carbalose Flour Bread)
  13. 1C Parmesan Cheese
Thin Sauce Directions
  1. Gradually heat cream. Put egg yolk in small bowl, then briskly stir in ½ cup of heated cream. Keep stirring, add rest of cream and set aside without further heating.
Thick Sauce Directions
  1. Heat cream several minutes but do not boil.
  2. Gradually add cream to beaten yolks (tempering the yolks) and put back on low heat, and using a whip constantly, stir until sauce has thickened. (About 3-4 minutes).
Putting It All Together Directions
  1. Clean and cook spaghetti squash. Remove “spaghetti” and drain any liquids.
  2. Sauté diced onions and lamb. If you opt for ground lamb, do not drain the grease-it tastes great. If you opt for ground beef add 3 T butter. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, spices and seasonings. Simmer for 30 minutes, or until liquid has been mostly absorbed.
  3. Preheat Oven to 340° F.
  4. Sprinkle bread crumbs into an 8”x8” inch baking pan. Place layer of spaghetti squash in the baking pan; then add half the thin cream sauce. Add meat mixture. Sprinkle with ½ cup grated cheese. Cover with remaining thin cream sauce. Spread thick cream sauce over the top and sprinkle it with remaining ½ cup cheese. Bake for 1 hour, or until golden brown and delicious. Let stand for 20 minutes to “set”, and then cut in portions (Note that you cannot cut the Pastitsio easily unless you let it stand for 20 minutes).
  5. Serves 6
  6. Counts include with/without crumbs made from Carbalose. I have included them in the recipe as they are authentic to the dish.
  7. 6 Servings/Bread Crumbs
  8. 757 Calories, 25.0g Protein, 14.2g Carbs, 2.7g Fiber, 11.5 Net Carbs
  9. 6 Servings/Without Bread Crumbs
  10. 719 Calories, 21.0g Protein, 13.2g Carbs, 2.1g Fiber, 11.1g Net Carbs
Notes
  1. This dish can be prepared a day in advance, adding the thick cream sauce just before baking. If you decide to make this a two day affair bring it to room temperature before putting it in the oven.
  2. Leftovers can be portioned and frozen and when thawed it will “weep”. Can’t be helped and will not alter the flavor one bit.
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