Chicken lasagna….. Honestly there is nothing as such! it is just a variation made by people who prefer chicken over beef. I can eat it, like it but I can never give it the place of traditional beef lasagna 🙂
The recipe below is a very Pakistani version of Lasagna, loaded with cheese, overused herbs & garlic & of course black olives, because that it what makes every recipe Italian or Mediterranean in Pakistan 😀 but it really handy for kids play dates, birthdays, tea parties & all kind of showers.
FOR RED SAUCE
- 750 gms chicken mince
- 2 tbspns ginger garlic paste
- ½ cup oil
- 1 cup fresh button mushrooms (sliced) (optional)
- 2 cans tomato
- ½ cup tomato paste
- 1 tbspn dried Italian herb mix
- ½ cup sweet chilli sauce
- Salt & pepper to taste
FOR WHITE/ BACHAMEL SAUCE
- 50 gms butter
- 1 tbspn heapful plain flour
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup cooking cream
- 1 cup cheese mix (cheddar, mozzarella & parmesan) (shredded)
- A pinch of salt & pepper
- A generous pinch of chicken salt
- 1 packet/ carton instant lasagna sheets
- 1.5 cups cheese mix (cheddar, mozzarella & parmesan) (shredded)
- Capsicum (cut into slices)
- Tomato (cut into slices)
- Some sliced black olives
- Italian herb mix mixed with red chilli flakes to garnish
FOR RED SAUCE
- Heat oil in a wide sauce pan and fry ginger garlic paste until it gives a cooked look which is light gold and light crispy. Add chicken mince, break it into pieces while cooking until all the moisture dries and oil oozes out. Add tomato paste, canned tomatoes, sweet chilli sauce, salt, pepper & Italian herb mix and let it simmer until the tomatoes break down and the mixtures starts looking like Bolognese sauce. (on low – medium heat – the process should take around 30 minutes)
- Add mushrooms and let it cook on low heat for further 5 minutes. (We didn’t add mushrooms with chicken because no one likes over cooked mushrooms)
- Remove from heat and let it cool.
FOR BECHAMEL SAUCE
- Mix milk & cream.
- Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat and add flour. Cook until the flour is light gold in color. Gradually add half n half (milk & cream mixture) with constant whisking until all the mixture is poured. Continue whisking until the sauce begins to thicken. Add cheese and continue mixing.
- Add salt, pepper & chicken salt, stir & remove from heat. Let it cool until needed.
- Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
- Now is the fun part….. “assembling lasagna”. In a rectangular Pyrex baking tray, lay a thin layer of bechamel sauce, followed by Bolognese sauce and lasagna sheets. This layer of sauce at the bottom will help in the cooking of lasagna sheet by providing a moist environment.
- Continue layering until the final layer is red sauce. Add shredded cheese on top with some capsicum & tomato rings, sprinkle some Italian herb mix and bake on the middle rack of the oven for 30 – 35 minutes, until the lasagna sheets are cooked through & the cheese is melted and bubbly.
- Take the dish out of the oven and let it rest for 7 – 8 minutes before cutting into portions.