I remember lasagna being one of my childhood faves/comfort foods, thanks to Garfield! Luckily, my Mom makes a really delicious version that I’ll never get tired of. I can eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and do the same thing all over the next day.
I dubbed this lasagna as a Filipino Style version because the sauce that my Mom and I use is the same Filipino-style sauce we use for Spaghetti. The Filipino Style sauce is different from your traditional red sauce pasta because it’s sweet and makes use of banana ketchup in it. We Filipinos love our spaghetti like that. But hey, don’t get me wrong. I also indulge in authentic bolognese and I also enjoy the sour tomato sauce taste in Italian pasta dishes! Now, let’s get on to making this Filipino-style lasagna!
There are three things we need to cook prior to prepping our lasagna dish. We need to cook:
- The lasagna noodles
- The white sauce
- The red sauce
Box of Lasagna
For the lasagna noodles, just follow the cooking directions in the box. I usually use the regular ones that are non-oven ready because I only cook my lasagna for a few minutes in the oven until the cheese melts. For this recipe, I used 1 box of lasagna, about 400-450 grams. I was able to fill up a big rectangle Pyrex dish with over 5 layers (or was it 6) of everything! Yes, sinful indeed, but you may opt to cook half of the recipe to make only 3 layers. So anyway, cook the lasagna pasta as directed, let it cool, and set aside for later use.
There are 3 measurements for you to choose depending on the consistency of white sauce that you like. I usually use medium thick.
(1st measurement is for a thin consistency, 2nd measurement for medium-thick, 3rd measurement for thick)
- Butter: 1 tbsp, 1 tbsp, 2 tbsp
- All purpose flour: 1 tbsp, 1 tbsp, 3 tbsp
- Salt: 1/2 teaspoon for all consistencies
- Evaporated Milk: 1/2 c, 1 c, 1 c
- Water: 1/2 c, none, none
- Melt butter in a small pot in low heat.
- Add flour and salt, and mix until well blended.
- Add milk a little at a time, making sure it’s blended well into the butter and flour mixture.
- Finally, if using water, add it to the mixture and cook on medium heat for a few minutes until desired consistency.
- Set aside for later use.
- 1-2 tsp oil
- 1 lb ground beef
- Chopped onions (about 1/4)
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- 2 medium cans tomato sauce
- Water, about half to 3/4 of the amount of tomato sauce (depends on how thick or thin you want your sauce to be, use the empty can of tomato sauce to measure, I start with 1 can of water first and add if needed)
- 1 big bottle of banana ketchup (you can find it at Asian stores, I use Jufran)
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1-3 tbsp of sugar (depending on how sweet you want it)
Optional ingredients I use
- dash of paprika
- dash of oregano
- dash of parsley
- 1/2 cup of cheese (parmesan or cheddar)
- Heat oil in a big sauce pan (or pot if you’re cooking a lot).
- Saute garlic and onions until garlic is light golden brown.
- Add ground beef until well-cooked/brown.
- Add soy sauce for flavor and to give it a darker color.
- Add tomato sauce and use the can to fill with water to add to the sauce.
- Add banana ketchup, mix, and add the rest of the ingredients (sugar, salt, pepper, paprika, oregano, parsley, cheese).
- Simmer for a few minutes and it’s done.
Assemble the Lasagna
Make sure your noodles, red sauce and white sauce are cooked. Prepare about 1/2 to 1 cup of cheese of your choice. I used a mix of Cheddar, Romano, Asiago, Parmesan, Mozzarella, Fontina and Provolone. But Cheddar alone is perfectly fine.
Start with your lasagna noodles by lining them on the very bottom of the dish.
As you can see in the photo below, I’m already on my second layer. But yes, I started with the noodles first.
Next, spread the red sauce on top of your lasagna noodles.
Continue with spreading the white sauce on top of the red sauce. It will blend nicely as you can see below. I’m getting hungry with this photo already! LOL!
Top off with your cheeses and repeat until you finish all your lasagna noodles! On a side note, if you love the white sauce, you can double the recipe of the white sauce above to use more white sauce on your lasagna!
Once you’ve filled your serving dish, it should look like this.
Seeing this makes me want to make one right now! YUM!
Now bake the lasagna in the oven (about 300F) for about 15 minutes or until the cheese melts! You can leave it longer if you want the noodles to absorb the sauces a bit and this will actually make cutting the lasagna less messy! If you only bake it a few minutes, when you cut the lasagna, there will be a lot of sauce left in the dish. But that’s fine because you can scoop those up and pour on top of the cut lasagna for a saucy treat!
See what I mean? We love our lasagna very saucy!!! But adding a couple more minutes in the oven will let the lasagna noodles absorb the sauce.
Now don’t you just want to grab a bite? Well, try it out yourself and let me know how it goes!
Hope you enjoy this lasagna recipe!