Macaroni, also known as Persian Spaghetti, is a dish where Iranian and Italian cuisines come together. However, I think that most Italians would be horrified at the fact that the noodles are overcooked; yet, I think that they will certainly be fascinated by the spaghetti tahdig. To me this is definitely a comfort food. There is something truly magical about the Spaghetti Tahdig and to be honest with you the greasiness of this recipe. Traditionally Iranians either use large spaghetti or a thick noodles such bucatini.

I have been meaning to post this recipe and finally the right time presented itself. A couple of weeks ago I saw the Oscar nominated film “The Salesman.” I walked away from watching this film, not only being very impressed with the acting and the storyline, but also with a sense of wonder about the characters’ choices.  In my opinion this is the type of movie that makes you think about what would you do if you found yourself in the same exact predicament. Would your actions and reactions be the same? Needless to say that I really really enjoyed the movie and I hope that it wins an Oscar this weekend.

In one of the scenes in the movie the actors sit down for a meal and as it turns out dinner was “espaghetti!”  Therefore, I thought this was the right time to post this recipe!


The first step is to sauté the onion and garlic then add turmeric and Advieh.


Next is the ground beef.


Followed by tomato sauce and paste.


Traditionally, the pasta is layered just like a polow. Franky, I prefer mixing it all together, minus one cup full of pasta to be used for the tahdig part.


The plain noodles go to the bottom of the pot with canola oil, brewed saffron, and water. Some people like to line the bottom of the pot with potatoes for this dish, however, I don’t because I absolutely love the spaghetti tahdig.


Then the rest of the pasta is placed over it and steamed for 1 hour.

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Macaroni ~ Persian Style Spaghetti
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6 servings
  • 1 lbs ground beef
  • 1 onion
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tbsp advieh
  • 3 cups tomato sauce
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 lb spaghetti
  • 3 tbsp brewed saffron
  • 3 tbsp canola oil
  • salt & pepper
  • olive oil
  1. Small dice onion and sauté until just golden in olive oil.
  2. Add minced garlic and cook for a couple of minutes longer.
  3. Add turmeric and advieh. Mix and continue cooking for 2 minutes longer.
  4. Add ground beef. Season with salt and pepper. Sauté until beef is browned.
  5. Add tomato sauce, cover and bring to a simmer on medium low.
  6. Add tomato paste, mix well, cover and simmer on medium low for an hour and half. Stir occasionally.
  7. Cook spaghetti according to the package's instructions until al dente.
  8. Drain pasta. Reserve one cup of the noodles and toss the rest with the meat sauce.
  9. Gently toss the one cup of noodle with ½ tsp of canola oil.
  10. To a non-stick pot add brewed saffron, canola oil, and 3 to 4 tablespoons of water. Mix the ingredients.
  11. Place the plain noodles and spread them evenly at the bottom of the pot.
  12. Add the tossed pasta. Create 5 holes with the back of a spatula.
  13. Cover the pot and cook on high for 10 minutes.
  14. Place a towel around the lid and continue to cook on low for 1 hour.
  15. Invert the Macaroni onto a serving plater and serve!