Makaronia Me Kima (Greek Pasta with Meat Sauce)

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Makaronia me Kima is a Greek meat sauce seasoned with cinnamon and other spices. It is served over a bed of pasta and topped with grated cheese, preferably Mizithra, but Kefalotyri, Pecorino, or Parmesan may also be used. It is thicker, includes more spices, and less vegetables than other bolognese-style sauces.

makaronia me kima (1 of 3)

Makaronia me Kima is definitely a new favorite for me. I really enjoy the Greek custom of adding cinnamon to pasta sauces. This dish is a wonderful comfort food and we couldn’t get enough of it. It took a lot of restraint on my part to leave enough leftover for Chad’s lunch the next day. Evan isn’t always a fan of pasta, but made an exception for this meal. The cooking time is a little long, but that is mostly to let the sauce simmer and flavors meld. There isn’t much actual work involved. I was unable to find Mizithra or Kefalotyri cheese in my area, so I used Pecorino. I hope to try this dish with traditional Greek cheese next time.

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Makaronia Me Kima (Greek Pasta with Meat Sauce)

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

4-6 servings


3 tablespoons olive oil

1 pound ground beef

1 medium onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 cup red wine

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon sugar

2-3 allspice berries (or large pinch ground)

pinch ground cloves

salt and pepper to taste

15 ounces tomato sauce

1 cup water

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

1/2 tablespoon butter

1 pound spaghetti

Grated cheese for garnish (mizithra, kefalotyri)

In a large saucepan, drizzle olive oil over medium high heat. Add the ground beef and cook, breaking up into small pieces, until browned. Stir in the onions and cook until softened. Add the garlic and cook just until fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add the red wine and simmer for 2 minutes.

Stir in the cinnamon, sugar, allspice, cloves, salt, pepper, tomato sauce, and water. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until just a little liquid remains, 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Stir in the parsley and butter until the butter melts.

In a large pot, bring water to a boil. Cook pasta until just tender, al dente. Drain and serve pasta topped with meat sauce and grated cheese.

Adapted from Honest Cooking

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