Baked Macaroni in Short Crust Pastry Case (Timpana)

Ingredients:
– 500gm macaroni
– 1 egg beaten
– sesame seeds
For the Dough:
– 500g plain flour
– 250g unsalted butter chilled and diced
– 3 -4 tablespoons ice-cold water
– 1 teaspoon salt
For the Sauce:
– 500gm minced meat *
– 1 large onion diced
– 5 tablespoons tomato purée
– 200ml beef stock
– 5 tablespoons grated cheese **
– 3 eggs beaten
– 1 tablespoon oil
– salt and pepper

Method:Dough Preparation:
Sift the flour. Add the salt. Rub in unsalted butter until mixture texture is crumbly. Gradually the cold water to the mixture and knead into dough ***. Roll to form a ball. Wrap in cling film and chill for at least 30 minutes before rolling it out.

Sauce Preparation:
Fry the onion until golden. Add the minced meat and fry while mixing continuously until done. Add the tomato purée and the beef stock. Simmer for at least an hour.

Pasta Preparation:
Boil the macaroni in salted water until just done ****. Place under running water to stop the cooking process. Drain from water and put back in pan.

Add the meat and tomato mixture to the macaroni and mix well. Add the grated cheese and the eggs and mix once again. Finally add salt and pepper to taste.

Divide the pastry into two parts, 1/3 and 2/3. Roll out both portions to a desired thickness. With the larger portion line the bottom and sides of a baking dish. Fill in with the macaroni mix. Cover all with the smaller pastry portion. Seal the upper and lower pastry portions together along the edges of the baking dish. Cut some slits in the upper pastry layer. Glaze the top with a beaten egg. Sprinkle sesame seeds. Bake in a moderate preheated oven approximately (200ºC fan forced) for 1 hour.

Notes:
* A mixture of minced beef and pork, corned beef and some diced bacon give a very good taste
** Parmesan cheese would be ideal
*** Adding too much water will give a hard pastry once cooked
**** Do not overcook the macaroni – undercooking the macaroni will in fact help them retain their shape when later baked in the oven.

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