Today I have to share with you another delicious recipe using Grana Padano DOP. Greek Pasta au gratin with pumpkin and Grana Padano DOP and two favorite Greek cheeses, with different textures and flavors which complement the wonderful full flavor of Grana Padano, tsalafouti and metsovone.
A few words about the recipe Greek Pasta Au Gratin
I also used a very tasty smoked cured steak that I found at the s/m a few days ago and it paired really well. You can skip it if your health doesn’t allow it, but if you decide to use it you will do very well 😉 It can be replaced with synglino or apaki, (both salted cured Greek traditional meat) in case you can’t find steak.
It is a meal very rich in taste, but lighter than the usual au gratin, since it does not contain full fat cream, but kefir and lighter cheeses.
Let’s remember a few things about Grana Padano DOP
Grana Padano was created almost 1000 years ago by Cistercian monks of the Chiaravalle Abbey in Milan. It is a hard cheese, slow ripening, semi-fat, with a Protected Designation of Origin. The milk used in its preparation comes only from the valley of the river Po. In 2022 over 5 million wheel of Grana Padano were produced and 44% exported all over the world.
The name is the combination of the Italian word grana (formaggio, cheese), which indicates a cheese with a characteristic grainy texture, and the surname Padano, which comes from the valley of the Po (Po). The PLAC cheese factory is one of the most important producers of Grana Padano. It was created in 1933 in the heart of the Po Valley, in Northern Italy, while in 2018 PLAC was renewed with its new brand Fattorie Cremona.
Nutrition facts of Grana Padano DOP
Grana Padano DOP is a cheese with excellent nutritional properties, flexible to a variety of nutritional needs. It contains proteins of high biological value in a high concentration, correspondingly nutritious to milk, but in a concentrated form. In addition, frequent consumption of Grana Padano DOP increases the daily intake of minerals, a vital part of a balanced diet. It is an important source of vitamins A, B2, B12, while it is completely free of carbohydrates and lactose due to the long aging period, which is why it is also extremely easy to digest, ideal for people suffering from lactose intolerance.
However, we must emphasize that, in addition to its high nutritional value and deliciousness, a very important characteristic of this cheese is that it can be used in countless recipes, with sure success. The distinctive logo, the unique taste and the techniques, preserved for centuries, constitute the rich history, the culture behind Grana Padano.
In today’s recipe Greek Pasta Au Gratin, I chose to use grated Grana Padano DOP.
Have a look in a couple more Grana Padano recipes:
Savory Cookies with Grana Padano DOP & Herbs
Persimmon Salad with Spicy Chickpeas & Grana Padano DOP
Greek Pasta Au Gratin with Pumpkin and Grana Padano DOP
Greek Pasta au gratin with pumpkin and Grana Padano DOP and two favorite Greek cheeses, with different textures and flavors which complement the wonderful full flavor of Grana Padano, tsalafouti and metsovone.
- • 400g greek pasta hilopites, cooked al dente
- • 300gr. peeled pumpkin, in medium cubes
- • 200gr. grated Grana Padano DOP, and extra for sprinkling
- • 200gr. tsalafouti (you may use ricotta)
- • 120g. grated metsovone, and extra for sprinkling (or other smoked hard cheese)
- • 150g. smoked steak (or apaki or siglino) in small cubes (optional)
- • 1 large onion, chopped
- • 2 cloves of garlic, grated
- • 300ml kefir
- • 350ml vegetable or chicken broth, preferably homemade
- • 3 spoons of olive oil
- • 1 ½ tsp dried sage, or 3-4 chopped fresh leaves
- • a little salt, pepper
Heat olive oil in a large saucepan, over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until soft.
Add the pumpkin, garlic, sage and salt and pepper and after a while pour in the stock. Let it boil, lower the heat and simmer until the pumpkin softens.
Meanwhile, cook the smoked steak in a small pan, until golden. Leave it aside.
Remove the pot from the heat, add the kefir and puree with a blender. Put it back on medium heat, add the cheeses a handful at a time, stirring so that they melt and then add the cooked noodles and the steak. Mix well.
Pour the food into an oiled ovenproof dish 23X33cm. approximately, and spread it evenly. Sprinkle with a bit more Grana Padano and metsovone.
Bake in a preheated oven, at 170°C, for 15-20 minutes. If necessary, then broil for 1-2 minutes until golden.