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Pasticcio

ingredients

serves 6
225 g (8 oz) fusilli, or other short pasta shapes
1 tbsp olive oil
4 tbsp double (heavy) cream
salt
rosemary sprigs, to garnish

sauce

2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for brushing
1 onion, sliced thinly
1 red (bell) pepper, cored, deseeded and chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
625 g (1 lb 6 oz) minced (ground) lean beef
400 g (14 oz) can chopped tomatoes
125 ml (4 fl oz) 1/2 cup dry white wine
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
50 g (1 3/4 oz) can anchovies, drained and chopped
salt and pepper

topping

300 ml (1/2 pint) 1 1/4 cups natural (unsweetened) yogurt
3 eggs
pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
40 g (1 1/2 oz) 1/3 cup Parmesan, grated

method

1. To make the sauce, heat the oil in a large frying pan (skillet) and fry the onion and red (bell) pepper for 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Stir in the beef and cook, stirring frequently, until no longer pink.

2. Add the tomatoes and wine, stir well and bring to the boil. Simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes, or until the sauce is fairly thick. Stir in the parsley and anchovies, and season to taste.

3. Cook the pasta in a large pan of boiling salted water, adding the oil, for 8 - 10 minutes or until tender. Drain the pasta in a colander, then transfer to a bowl. Stir in the cream and set aside.

4. To make the topping, beat together the yogurt and eggs and season with nutmeg, and salt and pepper to taste.

5. Brush a shallow baking dish with oil. Spoon in half of the pasta and cover with half of the meat sauce. Repeat these layers, then spread the topping evenly over the final layer. Sprinkle the cheese on top.

6. Bake in a preheated oven, 190°C/ 375°F/Gas Mark 5, for 25 minutes, or until the topping is golden brown and bubbling. Garnish with sprigs of rosemary and serve with a selection of raw vegetable crudites.

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