I once mentioned in my introduction that I won’t be using canned sauces in my recipes. Everything would be traditionally prepared as much as possible, which means no shortcuts. But, no, I cannot apply that rule in this recipe.
The reason is Filipino Style Spaghetti is always prepared with canned and bottled sauces. If I use fresh tomatoes alone (which I do sometimes with olive oil –> yum!), it won’t be Filipino style anymore. Tomatoes are not naturally sweet, at least that’s not how we acquired the taste; it may be too sour for the Filipino palate. Hence, we add sugar and banana catsup to balance the flavors. Why? Because that’s how we like it! Filipino Style Spaghetti is like Spaghetti Bolognese, but sweeter.
So my brother cooked Filipino Style Spaghetti yesterday, Sunday. I took some pictures, but it’s pretty much my own recipe inspired by my Tita‘s. My Lola was not a huge fan of spaghetti. She would rather eat Chinese noodles. Some credits also go to Joe, a college friend, who told me to add milk to the sauce to make it creamier. And, yes, it’s just so much better!
If you have kids, I’m sure they will love this dish. It will give Jollibee a run for its money any day. 🙂
Filipino Style Spaghetti Recipe
You will need:
- 2 tbsp cooking oil
- 5 cloves garlic, mashed and minced
- 4 medium-sized onions, minced
- 4 medium-sized tomatoes, minced
- 1/4 kilo ground pork
- 1/4 kilo ground beef
- 4 pieces jumbo hot dogs, sliced crossswise
- 1 small can tomato paste
- 1 small can tomato sauce
- 1 bottle banana catsup
- 1 small can evaporated milk
- 3 tbsp sugar
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 pack spaghetti, cooked according to package direction
- 2 cups cheddar or parmesan cheese, grated
How to prepare:
- In a large sauce pan over medium heat, sauté garlic, onion, and tomatoes in oil.
- Add the ground meat. Season with salt and pepper. Cook meat until brown while stirring occasionally.
- Add the hot dogs. Cook for a few minutes.
- Add tomato sauce, tomato paste, and banana catsup. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Reduce heat. Cover and simmer for about 20 minutes while stirring occasionally.
- Add evaporated milk and a cup of grated cheese. Add sugar if you prefer a sweeter sauce. Simmer for a few more minutes with occasional stirring. Taste to check if it needs more seasoning.
- Serve over cooked pasta. Sprinkle with grated cheese.
Pro-tip: If you can’t find banana catsup in your area, you can use canned tomato pasta sauce or double the amount of tomato sauce. Add more sugar to lessen the sourness of the tomato sauce.