Egyptian pasta bake recipe

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  • Ingredients
  • Meat and poultry
  • Beef
  • Beef pasta

This is a recipe for a satisfying and hearty pasta bake with a creamy bechamel sauce from my Egyptian friend. My kids love it and it tastes quite special.

4 people made this

IngredientsServes: 8

  • 500g macaroni or rigatoni pasta
  • 750ml milk
  • 85g butter
  • 5 tablespoons plain flour
  • 1/2 bay leaf
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • ground nutmeg, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 500g beef mince
  • ground allspice, to taste

MethodPrep:30min ›Cook:50min ›Ready in:1hr20min

  1. In a large saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the pasta according to instructions on the package, or until al dente. Drain.
  2. In a saucepan over a hight heat, bring milk to the boil then remove from the heat and set aside. In a small saucepan melt butter then add the flour and stir constantly until golden brown. Gradually stir in the milk and whisk until thick and smooth. Add bay leaf, salt, pepper and nutmeg and simmer over low heat for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring frequently.
  3. Preheat oven to 180 C / Gas 4.
  4. In a frying pan, heat the olive oil and add the onions brown the mince breaking it apart with a spoon while cooking. Season with salt, pepper and allspice to taste.
  5. Grease a casserole dish and add alternating layers of pasta and mince.
  6. Remove bay leaf from the bechamel sauce and give it a good stir. Pour over the noodles, cover with aluminium foil.
  7. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 5 minutes until golden brown on top. Remove from the oven and serve hot.

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Pasta with bechamel مكرونة بالبشامل

Pasta is popular as the carbohydrate component of meals.

Preparation Time: 1.5 hours

1 pack any kind of pasta.
3 tablespoons flour.
3 tablespoons butter.
4 cups milk.
Vegetable oil.
1 onion.
Tomato paste.
Minced meat.
Salt and pepper.
1 egg.

Boil pasta and drain. set aside.

Melt butter in a saucepan and add flour.
Add milk, salt and pepper, stir constantly untill smooth.
Set bachamel aside.

Heat oil in a pan and add onion, cook untill yellow then add minced meat and stir.
Add salt and pepper and leave to cook.
In a cup of water, mix tomato paste then add to minced meat and leave to continue cooking.
Prepare a baking dish, put half quantity of pasta and bechamel then spread minced meat, add the rest of pasta.
Mix the egg with remaining bechamel and pour over top.
Preheat oven.
Put baking dish until the surface becomes golden brown.
Serve hot.

Egyptian baladi bread recipe…finally, after many failures!

I almost hugged that piece of bread when I saw it rising correctly and looking like the Egyptian baladi bread. It was such an excitement as if I won a lottery even when I never play it anyway. OK, maybe that is a bit of exaggeration but you have no idea how many times I followed recipes, videos and yet failed to get this bread right. I was always running in one of 2 problems:

  • Bread is not rising with the 2 sides are stuck together
  • and/or brown wheat is taking over all the flavors of the bread

I learnt so many things about my mistakes while trying to bake the baladi bread. Here are some of the things I learnt:

  • Make sure the yeast is bubbling very well before using.
  • Let the bread rise and take its time to rise, do not rush the process. I learnt patience is the key.
  • Use more white flour than the wheat flour if you like the lighter color and flavors like me. Some people use all whole wheat and I did not like that flavor.
  • Do not use the oven. We will use the stove top instead.
  • We will need a hot pan and a hand grill.

  • The pan is used to seal the 2 sides of the bread, 15 seconds only each side. If it stays longer, the bread might not rise.
  • The grill is used to finish the bread cooking and make it rise with the 2 sides of it not to stick together.
  • Make sure the heat is high on the hand grill, then control it while the bread is rising not to get the bread burnt. Technique is in video below.

I really hope it works for you. If not, please let me know what your problem was in a message or comment.


1 1/2 cup white flour
1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour (P.S., I like the baladi bread not too dark, so I use more of white flour, you can switch the ratio in the future if you like the baladi more brownish with whole wheat flavors)
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon dry yeast
1/2 cup to 1 cup of very warm water

Sprinkle the dry yeast on the top of 1/2 cup of the warm water. Sprinkle the sugar (1/4 teaspoon) as well and set aside.
In a mixing bowl sift the white flour.
Add the wheat flour to the white flour and the salt then mix them together.

In the kitchen mixer, mix the flour with the yeast mix.

Add little by little of warm water, not too much. I think you might need a max of 1 cup of warm water.

While mixing add the honey.
The dough has to be soft but not sticky to your fingers.
If sticky, do not panic, just add more wheat flour and knead more.
Now, in a bowl brushed with some corn oil, add the dough and cover with plastic wrap.
Place the bowl in dark warm place for an hour.
After an hour, divide the dough into about 5 pieces and cover again with plastic wrap for 1 more hour to rise again.

Now, you can follow the video or follow the steps below.

This next step is optional but if you are a picky baladi eater, man, you get to do it! Sift some wheat flour in a bowl. Do not use that white flour in the bowl, but use those brown flakes to flour the surface with while flattening the dough. Use a lot of it to give this baladi bread that correct rough feeling.

If you do not want to do that, just flour the surface with wheat flour before flattening the dough.

Exact steps to get the bread cooked are:

  • On high heat, place the pan to be really hot.
  • Put the hand grill on the other stove top on high heat.
  • Take a piece of dough and flatten it with your roller over some wheat flour. Make it thin in your first trial. When you become comfortable with this recipe, you can play around with the thickness to make it fuller.
  • Place the flat dough on the hot pan for 10 seconds. Now flip on the other side for 10 seconds.

  • There needs to be a big space between the bread and the fire as shown in the video. So, I put the hand grill even over the stove metal piece. I want to get it REALLY hot.

Enjoy and when it gets a bit cool, cover or place in Ziploc. Best with fol midames or some feta cheese with tomatoes and cucumber

Recipe Summary

  • ½ pound ground beef
  • 2 tomatoes, diced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 pinch paprika, or to taste
  • 1 pinch ground coriander, or to taste
  • 1 pinch ground cinnamon, or to taste
  • 1 pinch ground nutmeg, or to taste
  • salt and ground black pepper to taste
  • 5 pita bread rounds, split
  • 1 tablespoon corn oil

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook and stir ground beef in the hot skillet until browned and crumbly, 5 to 7 minutes. Let cool slightly.

Mix beef, tomatoes, onion, bell pepper, paprika, coriander, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and pepper together in a large bowl. Stuff mixture inside of pita bread rounds.

Brush tops with corn oil and wrap each in aluminum foil. Place on a baking sheet.

Bake in the preheated oven until toasted and vegetables are softened, about 30 minutes.

Macaroni Recipe

Let’s see the ingredients of this recipe…

  • Firstly you need 16 ounces penne pasta.
  • You need 2 garlic clove.
  • You need 2 lbs of ground beef.
  • Fresh thyme needed 1 teaspoon.
  • You need 1 piece of onions.
  • Cinnamon needed 1 table spoon.
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh parsley.
  • Tomato sauce needed 8 ounce.
  • You need 1-2 egg.
  • You need 1 dash of parmesan cheese for it.
  • Milk needs 8 cups.
  • Flour needed 5-6 tablespoon.
  • Butter needed 6 tablespoon.
  • Nutmeg needed ½ tablespoon.
  • You also need tasting salt, taste white paper and tasting black paper.

Our ingredients are ready now we would see the method of cooking, how we could cook the Egyptian macaroni and béchamel sauce…

First we would see the making method of macaroni…

  • Firstly you would prepare the pasta.
  • Now you would fry up the onion until it becomes soft.
  • Then you would mix garlic and would again fry it up for 2 minutes.
  • Then you would add the ground beef and fry up it.
  • Then you would drain the extra fat from it.
  • Then you would add the parsley fresh thyme and keep stirring it until it get mixed properly.
  • Then you would stir the can of tomato sauce and would boil over low heat about 10 minutes.
  • Now you would remove it from the heat and let it to be cool. When it would be cold you would stir it in the beaten egg.

Macaroni Pasta Recipe

Now we would see the cooking method of sauce béchamel…

  • For the sauce firstly you would melt the butter on a large pan over a high heat. You would put off the heat until it becomes smooth. Keep it whisking for 2 minutes.
  • You would add the milk and keep whisking it until it is mixed properly and make it sure that there are no lumps in it.
  • Then you would add Salt, black papers and white papers. You would do it according to your choice.
  • You would beat keep beating until the sauce is almost boiling.
  • Then you would beat the thyme and the nutmeg properly. You have to make it that the sauce must be thick.
  • Then you would first whisk in the beaten eggs and would remove it from the heat.

Now you would mix the macaroni and the béchamel sauce and would make an awesome dish…

  • First you have to mix the half of the mixture of béchamel sauce into the pasta.
  • Then you would pour half of the pasta into the dish.
  • Now you would make a layer of meat over the pasta.
  • Then you would add the rest pasta on the up layer.
  • Then you would pour the rest béchamel on the top layer and mix it on the whole.
  • Now you would bake it on the oven for 40-50 minutes at 400 degrees until it turns into golden brown.

There are some people do not prefer to add tomato sauce for this recipe, both ways are correct.

Now our recipe is ready and it’s time to serve. Make a nice presentation it would increase the taste. You should definitely try it. Hope you would love it.

Macaroni Béchamel

Egyptian macaroni bechamel is definitely one of those dishes that personifies comfort food through and through. Layered with a white sauce and ground meat and made in one dish is every home cooks dream. Macaroni Béchamel is perfect in every way because it includes protein, starch and dairy.

What is macaroni béchamel?

Macaroni bechamel (or macarona bechamel) is the Egyptian version, most likely based on a Greek recipe. It is typically made with penne or macaroni pasta, a layer of cooked spiced beef, tomatoes or tomato sauce, and béchamel sauce, sometimes with egg or cheese.

The actual Greek version is known as pastitsio (Greek: παστίτσιο, pastítsio), sometimes spelled pastichio and it is a Greek baked pasta dish with ground meat and béchamel sauce.

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The typical Greek version has a bottom layer that is bucatini or other tubular pasta, with cheese and/or egg as a binder a middle layer of ground beef, or a mix of ground beef and ground pork with tomato sauce, cinnamon and cloves. Other spices like nutmeg or allspice are used in the top layer that is a flour-based béchamel or a béchamel with cheese (known as Mornay sauce in France). Grated goat cheese is often sprinkled on top. Pastitsio is a common dish, and is often served as a main course, with a salad.

History of the Béchamel sauce

As the housewife in the 17th Century did not have the luxury of modern refrigeration, they were wary of using milk in their recipes. Peddlers were known to sell watered down or rancid produce. Basically, only the rich or royalty could use milk in their sauces.

Béchamel sauce was invented by Duke Philippe De Mornay (1549-1623), Governor of Saumur, and Lord of the Plessis Marly in the 1600s. Béchamel Sauce is a variation of the basic white sauce of Mornay. He is also credited with being the creator of Mornay sauce, sauce chasseur, sauce lyonnaise, and sauce Porto.

Origin of the Béchamel

Balsamella or Besciamella is the Italian equivalent of the French Béchamel: a very simple white sauce of flour, butter and milk.

The sauce was originally from Renaissance Tuscany and was known as salsa colla or salsa colletta (“glue sauce”) because of the gluey consistency of the sauce, and was brought to France by the chefs of Caterina de’ Medici in 1533. Louis de Béchamel, Marquis de Nointel, was a financier who held the honorary post of chief steward to King Louis XIV.

This sauce was prominent in Italian cooking texts of the Renaissance as “salsa colla”, but was renamed much later in Le Cuisinier François, published in 1651 by François Pierre La Varenne (1615–1678), chef de cuisine to Nicolas Chalon du Blé, marquis d’Uxelles. The foundation of French cuisine, the Cuisinier François ran through some thirty editions in seventy-five years. The sauce originally was a veal velouté, with a large amount of cream added.

Variations of macaroni bechamel

In Cyprus, a similar dish is called makarónia tou foúrnou (“oven macaroni”). It is an essential dish during weddings and celebrations such as Easter, where it is served along with spit roasted meat.

Recipes vary, but usually the meat sauce in the middle is made of pork, beef or lamb, tomatoes are only sometimes used, and it is flavored with mint, parsley or cinnamon. The top is sprinkled with grated halloumi or anari cheese, though cheese is sometimes added only to the white sauce.

There is also a Turkish Cypriot version of this recipe called bol peynirli makarna fırında, which substitutes the meat with 2 types of cheese: kaşar peyniri and beyaz peyniri.

In Malta, timpana (the name probably derived from timballo) is made by tossing parboiled macaroni in a tomato sauce containing a small amount of minced beef or corned beef, bound with a mixture of raw egg and grated cheese. Hard-boiled eggs are sometimes added. The macaroni is then enclosed in a pastry case or lid before being baked. A similar dish without the pastry casing is imqarrun.

Pastitsio takes its name from the Italian pasticcio, a large family of baked savory pies which may be based on meat, fish, or pasta.

Many Italian versions include a pastry crust some include béchamel. The word pasticcio comes from the vulgar Latin word pastīcium derived from pasta, and means “pie”, and has developed the figurative meanings of “a mess”, “a tough situation”, or a pastiche.

We hope you enjoy this delicious macaroni bechamel all the way from Egypt.

Recipe Summary

  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • salt to taste
  • ¼ cup milk, or as needed
  • 2 cups vegetable oil, or as needed

Fill a large pot with lightly salted water and bring to a rolling boil add 2 teaspoons cumin to boiling water. Cook cauliflower florets, working in batches, in the boiling water until cooked but still crisp, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and cool on a plate.

Blend flour, egg, garlic, 1 teaspoon cumin, tomato paste, and salt in a blender or food processor until smooth thin with milk as needed.

Heat oil in a deep skillet to about 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Dip cauliflower florets in the batter fry battered cauliflower in the hot oil, working in batches, until cauliflower is golden and crispy, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel-lined plate.


Ancient Egyptian bread was often made from barley, millet, and once it become available, wheat. Though not always combined, sometimes two or all three of these were used in a single recipe. Bread was a very simplistic form. Yeast did not exist in Egypt until well into the Middle Kingdom, so most loaves were takes on what we would consider today "flat" breads. And though it existed, yeast was not particularly popular until the New Kingdom era.

Bread consisted of only three simple ingredients:

  • Flour made from barley, millet or wheat.
  • Water
  • Leavening: leavening to us is yeast, but Egypt used sourdough starters or spent brewery grain which, unknown to them, had yeast in it.

To this incredibly basic recipe, sometimes flavorings were added prior to baking. Sometimes flavors were added afterward. Sesame seed, honey, herbs, oil, egg washes, fruits and even sometimes bits of leftover chopped meat were added to help spice up these supplementary loaves.

© gichristof - Ancient Egyptian Food

To make ancient Egyptian bread, follow this recipe:

  • Mix three parts flour to one part water. Mix with the hands until it forms a sticky dough lump. If needed, add more water. You're looking for the dough to pull away from the side of the bowl, as in normal bread.
  • You may use yeast if you desire, but it is best to use a sourdough starter or ground brewery grain if available. You can grind brewery grain in a food processor.
  • Allow to rise for thirty minutes, separate into rounds, place on a baking sheet and insert into a 300 degree oven. If you happen to have an outdoor fireplace that is food safe or barbecue grill these work wonderfully to recreate the same sorts of cooking environments these recipes came from.
  • Cook for about 45 minutes. Check halfway through with a knife. When a knife comes out clean, pull your bread from the oven and let it cool.
  • Slice like a pizza. It's perfect to serve with almost anything as a side, or, if having added meat or fruit to it, as a "sandwich" portion of food for lunch.

© Ashley Van Haeften - Woman grinding grains

Bechamel Pasta Bake

Bechamel pasta bake was a dish that I always loved but my mom would rarely make it growing up. I had the pleasure of enjoying it over family friends who were Egyptian and this is one of their specialty dishes known as macrona bechamal. I was hooked from then on! Even now into my adult years, I would find myself craving this bechamel pasta bake but intimidated to make it because of all the layers and flavors involved.

Let me tell you that making a bechamel sauce is one of the easiest things to do! To some, that is the most intimidating part but I promise you that it isn’t hard at all. Just a few steps and ingredients and you will have a tasty bechamel perfect for this pasta! The hearty meat sauce also adds a lot of flavors and to this dish. The meat is well seasoned and the sauce is nicely thickened with tomato paste.

What pasta is best for a bechamel pasta bake?

While any pasta would ultimately work, some would be much better than others in regards to this dish. I would typically go for long thick ziti noodles which is what I used in this recipe. Penne pasta would work great too as often that is used in Greek pastisio which is very similar to this bechamel pasta bake.

I really hope you this this recipe a try! My husband and I devoured it in one day because it was just addicting. The bechamel is creamy, cheesy, and has the perfect crust. The meat layer is hearty and flavorful and just gives the whole meal even more sustenance. The pasta is cooked and baked to perfection and one bite with all 3 components is just heavenly! Let me know what you think in the comments!

Marinated Vegetables Salad

In a culture that is rich in celebrations and family get-togethers, small dishes are great additions on those banquet tables. They’re also great starters on a mezzeh / appetizers table. Served at room temperature, those marinated vegetables are refreshing. When picking tomatoes for this salad, choose them firm and in season for full flavor. For [&hellip]

Watch the video: How To Make Baked Pasta With Ground Beef And Bechamel Sauce (November 2021).