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Pastitsio Nistisimo (Vegan)

Pastitsio is a staple food for all Greek families and I cannot think of anybody who does not like this dish. However during lent we abstain from eating any kind of meat or products derived from animals and although I have seen some vegan recipes, most of them have milk in the béchamel. For this reason I decided to make my own recipe which we can enjoy during Lent.

To replace the meat sauce, I decided to make a vegetable sauce and added a variety of vegetables and herbs.  Although normally I would  add only the canned tomatoes, I decided to added an extra cubed tomato for some extra  colour in the dish and the carrots, combined with the onions, added a lovely sweetness to the sauce.  The filling turned out to be too much for the quantity I needed, so you can either add half the ingredients or store the remaining in the deep freezer to be used another time, as I did.

Although I do not have a garden but merely a small balcony, I grow a few herbs in pots and I’ve recently bought some more herbs so you will be seeing a lot of these in my recipes and of course the difference is amazing. In this recipe, I used fresh parsley, oregano, rosemary and thyme from my pots and laurel I picked that morning after walking at Hymettus mountain, which added a lovely aromatic taste to the sauce.

The recipe is included in my cookbook Mint, Cinnamon & Blossom Water, Flavours of Cyprus, Kopiaste!

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25 Responses

  1. A delicious looking Pastitsio!



  2. Wow superb recipe.

  3. Ben

    I wasn’t aware the Orthodox Lent didn’t allow dairy until you informed me. I am not sure if the Catholic one does, but I remember people in Mexico eating cheese during Lent. LOL that’s what I get for not being religious :-p This pastitsio sounds really good. I guess I will have to try to make some soon since I have seen a lot of recipes for it around lately. Great entry for PPN 🙂

  4. I particularly love the heart photo and what a fantastic bechamel for the pastitsio too.

    Thanks for sharing with Presto Pasta Nights.

  5. I have been waiting to see this delicious dish after you hinted with your bechamel sauce. It does sound delicious and I can see why the family would rave about it and want seconds.

  6. I’d been wondering about how to make a vegetarian pastitsio. This sounds fantastic!

  7. I have never heard of this dish, but then i am not a greek, it looks so yumm, it islike a real comforting food.
    Yeah i too don’t have fancy camera or lights etc…. and not photoshop, i am giving hints to my hubby to buy photoshop 🙂

  8. This sounds delicious … telika to pastitsio mas mporei na parei polles morfes! Love this one Ivy; it is flavorful and hearty and I am sure you do not even notice the missing meat, or even want it in any way.

  9. bee

    this looks delicious!! thanks for your entry, dear ivy.

  10. What a great dish for Lent Ivy – I have never heard of this before and it’s always lovely to keep learning new dishes 😀 Nice click too

    Rosie x

  11. I love this version, Ivy! It has so many delicious goodies in it!

  12. The heart photo is so creative and what a beautiful verdant green! I would love to try your pastitsio someday!

  13. I don’t think I can ever get enough pastitsio recipes Ivy! This vegetarian version looks delicious and tasty!

  14. I like the vegetarian version Ivy. I see that u used the vegan bechamel in this! I never had pastitsio before.

    I saw your pic in the gallery .. very nice idea!

  15. This dish looks really delicious and healthy.

  16. Mmmm this has a lot of wonderful ingredients. I love your collage as well. Very nicely done as always!

  17. Appetizing dish,with herbs fresh from mountains and a vegan béchamel ,a must try pasta recipe:).I like the click on the wood 🙂

  18. Lovely recipe 🙂

    Btw, thank you for the wishes…hope your daughter had a wonderful day on the 11th; I’m glad it’s a special day for you too 🙂

  19. Great recipe. I’ll keep this in mind for lent. Thanks!

  20. Gorgeous!! The filling looks so delightful with all those different colours and ingredients. Also love how well it holds together. Thank you for sending it my way

  21. What a wonderful creation. I’ve never tried this, but I wish I could have some right now. Lovely images too Ivy.

  22. Your Lenten version of Pastitsio comes with a wonderful and suprising result. You know how one is always hungry during Lent – this dish can alleve that.

  23. What a nice recipe, Ivy! Your Pastitsio looks wonderful.

  24. PG

    this looks so good! And WOW! A very innovative and I’m sure a wonderful recipe of a dairy and milk free bechamel. A lovel idea of showing all the steps in one picture, looks beautiful too.

  25. Appreciate ur effort. Good and nice presentation!