Lasagne was one of the first recipes that I ever mastered. It was always my piece de resistance at university, when I would make it from scratch on a Sunday afternoon. At home over the years I made lasagne less and less as I mastered more interesting and exotic recipes although it’s always been a great fall back. Living in Korea I really began to miss lasagne, they have a microwaveable one they sell in Homeplus, although slightly enjoyable in a plastic kind of way it tastes nothing like a real lasagne should. When I finally found Lasagne sheets in the foreign food mart I knew it was time to make this delicious treat again.
If making this at home I would stick with the beef variety but as you know here in Korea beef is rather expensive unless you get some late at night in Homeplus that has been reduced. So at first I used ground pork but eventually moved on to chicken breast. I find that the combination of chicken and vegetables actually works rather well. I have given the recipe as I made it this time but you can add whichever vegetables you like or are cheapest. Purists just stick with the beef, onions and tomatoes but personally I think extra veg adds taste, bulk and nutrients.
3 chicken breasts / 500g ground beef
6 cloves of garlic
100g of mushrooms
2 peppers (any colour)
30 fresh chopped cherry tomatoes or a can of chopped tomatoes
Lasagne sheets (I bought mine at the foreign food mart)
½ large courgette (Zucchini)
200g spinach (optional)
3 tablespoons of mixed herbs
3 tablespoons of sweet chili sauce
1 pint of milk
50g cheese for the sauce
100g of cheese for the topping
Finely chop the onions and garlic then fry in olive oil for 5 minutes until they are translucent and slightly browned. Add the chopped chicken breast, the smaller the pieces the better. Fry until the chicken is cooked on the outside then add the vegetables. Fry for 10 minutes until they are starting to get soft, then add the chopped tomatoes, herbs and sweet chili sauce and cook for a further 10 minutes. Take a large lasagne dish (mine is a square dish 25cm by 25cm) and lay out your lasagne sheets on the bottom then top with a layer of the tomato chicken mix and then top with another layer of the lasagne and top with the tomato mix again. Lay out the last layer of lasagne sheets then top with the cheese sauce (directions below) and grated cheese and cook in the oven for 20 – 30minutes until the cheese is golden brown and the pasta is cooked through.
The cheese sauce is very simple to make, melt the butter in a saucepan then add the flour and stir until it forms a paste. Add the milk and stir continuously until the milk heats and the sauce begins to thicken, if it’s too thick add more milk until you reach the right consistency. Once the sauce is right add the extra cheese and stir until it’s melted.