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The 195: Cooking Edition – Albanian Pastice

We love to travel. And when we aren’t galivanting around the world we’re cooking up a storm in the kitchen. That’s why Galavante is bringing the world to you through food. We’ll be cooking a national dish from each country, and today our focus is Albania. Dishes such as burek and Tave Kosi are commonly found on menus across the country, so maybe you’ve heard of them before. What we’re going to be making today though is Albanian pastice.

What is Albanian Pastice?

Albania’s tumultuous history meant that food supplies were often limited, so households made do with what they had in their cupboards. And with its strong trade connections to Greece and Italy, the pastice was born. Pastice is a home cooked Albanian dish made with spaghetti noodles, feta cheese, milk and eggs. It’s then browned on top and cut into pie-like slices to serve. You’ll find a variety of versions of this dish in different countries. In Greece and Italy it’s served almost like a lasagna, whereas in the US you’ll know it as mac and cheese.

Our version of pastice stays true to the original, except we added some toasted breadcrumbs on top. You can also go gluten-free on the pasta. And yes, grandma would definitely approve.

Albanian Pastice Recipe

Recipe from Albanian Cuisine

Ingredients

  • 6 (six) eggs
  • 2 cups of milk
  • Spaghetti
  • Feta Cheese
  • A dash of Olive Oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Breadcrumbs (optional)

Instructions

  1.  While you preheat the oven to 350 degrees, start boiling your pasta. Cook it until it’s al dente. It will continue to cook in the oven so you don’t want the pasta to turn into mush.
  2.  While the pasta is cooking, begin making the mix in a baking dish. Mix together the eggs, milk, salt, pepper and oil. We left out how much feta cheese to use because everyone puts in their desired amount.
  3.  Mix in your feta but make sure you leave it in chunky crumbled pieces.
  4.  Once the pasta is al dente, add it to your egg and feta mix. Keep mixing until all of the spaghetti is coated and spread out evenly. You can sprinkle breadcrumbs on top if you want.
  5.  Place it in the oven and let it cook for 45 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Your nose will be the first to let you know when it’s done. You can let it cool a little or you can eat it right away. Either way it will be delicious.

Albanian Pastice dish in the oven.

Pastice is very easy to make, and we can see why it’s a go-to dish for Albanian families. Even if you aren’t traveling at the moment, you can still enjoy the flavors of Europe from the comfort of your own home. There are so many delicious Albanian recipes to dig into, so who knows which one we’ll be making next.

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