Makaronatha is a Greek version of spaghetti and meat sauce. Garnish with ground Kefalotiri or shredded Kefalogavyera for added flavor. For those die-hard Greeks, a salty ground Mizithra made from goat/sheep milk is used to top it.

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1kg of ground beef
1 onion, chopped
3 whole garlic cloves
1 sprig fresh thyme
2 sprigs fresh basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp Worcestershire
1 tbsp oil

1/2 cup Pastini
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tbsp sugar
2 1/4 cups water/stock of choice
Spaghetti cooked according to package directions*
1 tbsp oil
1 tbsp butter
Ground Kefalotiri to garnish

Heat the oil in a pot and caramelize the onions. Add the garlic cloves, fresh herbs and seasonings and cook for an additional minute. Add the meat and cook until the meat is fully browned. While the meat is cooking, mix the Pastini, tomato paste, sugar and 1 cup of the water/stock until well blended. Add to the browned meat and add an additional 1 1/4 cups water/stock along with the Worcestershire.

Cover the pot and cook the sauce on low heat until the liquid has been reduced and the sauce thickens to desired consistency. Stir frequently while reducing.

Cook the spaghetti according to package directions. *Depending on the number of people you are serving, a rule of thumb is to wrap your hand around as much pasta as you can loosely fit between your thumb and finger times the number of people (for four people, you will do this four times).

Toss the cooked pasta in heated oil and butter. Cover with sauce and desired cheese.

Makes 4 to 6 servings

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