Spaghetti (Filipino junk food version)


I will share with you a “secret” spaghetti sauce recipe.  “Secret” because I don’t let people know I crave this and make this once in a while—a real junk food in my opinion, very Filipino in taste which deters others but delights some.  I had been trying to re-create the J—-bee (a fast food chain) spaghetti of my early childhood, which by the time I started working the quality has deteriorated so much due to cutting corners—so bad that our expats and volunteers from the UK would bring newly-arrived colleagues to J—-bee to initiate them and give them the shock of their lives—giving them the chance to re-consider working in the PH.

Anyway, I made this and brought some with me to my friend A’s place yesterday for our occasional catch up and lunch together—thinking I would just apologise for my poor taste but please bear with me I am just really craving it since last week!  But my friend A is an ACE, you know—she’s prepared some lovely Indian dishes as usual, so who am I to refuse? 🙂  Out of good will she did take the sauce and said she will just prepare the spaghetti for themselves later.  And here’s the text I got last night (and she’s v.honest too, by the way):

“The sauce was delicious!  We enjoyed it soooooooo much!  Thank you.”

Well, well, well!  If an excellent home-cook from the gastronomic capital India approves it, then it goes in my blog!  Hurrah!

This is how I made what’s in the picture, but feel free to add more meat such as beef mince.


Ingredients for the tomato sauce (good for 1kg of spaghetti):
3 bacon rashers (cut into small bits and fried)
splash of water
olive oil for sautéing/frying
5 large cloves of garlic (minced)
1 onion (julienned)—this is optional
3 hotdogs/frankfurters/pepperoni (thin disks) or bits of ham
½-1 red capsicum (if you have any, which I didn’t!)
2 tomatoes (sliced thinly)
1 small carrot (cut into slivers)
1 tin of tomatoes
catsup/tomato sauce (est. 5 squirts)
“American” mustard sauce from the squeezy-type plastic bottles (est. 4 squirts)
tomato puree (for adjusting thickness/consistency)
fish/Thai sauce (est. 2 dashes)
sea salt to taste (est. 1 pinch)
1 level tbsp of white sugar
pepper to taste
1 tsp of dried mixed herbs
1 tsp of dried basil

1. Place your small bits of bacon rashers in a deep skillet or wide saucepan.  Add just a splash of water.  Cover, let boil, then open the lid and allow to dry until rendering.
2. Add a generous amount of olive oil, add and fry the garlic, then onion (I didn’t opt for the onion this time).
3. Add the capsicum and fry (I skipped this as I didn’t have any).
4. Then the fresh tomatoes.  Cover until juices run out.
5. Add the carrot slices.  When carrots are cooked…
6. Add the tinned tomatoes—if they’re whole, break them into pieces in the pot (easy-peasy!).  Cover and allow to simmer.
7. Add the catsup/tomato sauce, American mustard and tomato puree; Thai sauce, sea salt and sugar.
8. Add pepper to taste.
9. Just before you turn off the stove—stir in the dried mixed herbs and the additional dried basil.

9 responses to “Spaghetti (Filipino junk food version)

  1. It’s sad when companies get so big they start cutting corners, but that’s where good home cooking takes over. Like this recipe, which looks good. 🙂

  2. Oh my goodness, the memories of sitting in the fast food place ‘explaining’ to volunteers what they were looking at on the plate have all come flooding back. I see you’ve added more ingredients to make this dish palatable. I remember the ingredients being: congeled fat, pasta, unidentified sausage. Thanks for the memories my dear!

  3. I am an Indian and have a very good friend from Philippines who makes killer spaghetti bolognese! I begged her for her recipe and have it now 🙂 I can imagine how yummy this must be!!

    • The guarded secret recipe is out! 🙂

      I’m glad you have an idea of how it tastes like. I was worried because the sugar and sodium contents differ between different brands of catsup, mustard, fish sauce, etc.–but now you have the list of ingredients, and re-creating the balance of tastes from memory should be easy! Yayyyyy! 🙂 ❤

  4. This is different, but looking at the mix of ingredients it no doubt tastes great. I like finding new ways to cook things on the blogosphere. 🙂

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