Baked Spaghetti


        1 lb. spaghetti
        2 cups ground or chopped meat, preferably lamb
        1/2 cup fat
        1/4 cup pine nuts
        1 1/2 fresh cups tomato juice
        1 smadlln can tomato paste
        1 cup finaly chopped onions
        1 1/4 tsp. salt
        1/4 tsp. pepper
        1/4 tsp. cinnamon
        1 cup water
        Grated cheese (Parmesan or Lebanese Kashkawan)
Break spaghetti in 2-inch lengths and boil in salted water until tender. Drain. Prepare sauce. Fry onions in fat until tender. Add meat and brown lightly. Add pine nuts. Season with salt, pepper and cinnamon. Add tomato juice and tomato paste with water. Cook under pressure 15 minutes, or simmer gently on top of stove for 30 minutes until sauce thickens. Add salt to taste. Stir spaghetti into sauce, mixing well. Pour into baking dish, sprinkle with grated cheese and bake in moderate oven until piping hot and cheese is melted. Serves 8.

Villagers who have no ovens of their own prepare this spaghetti at home and then carry it to the town bakery. Or they may not bake it at all, but simply pour the hot sauce over the boiled spaghetti, cook it for a few minutes, sprinkle it with cheese and call it a meal.

(From Food from the Arab World Marie Karam Khayat and Margaret Clark Keatinge, Khayat's, Beirut 1959)