Since starting work full-time again I’ve been terrible with getting supper on the table. After a 45 minute commute, I get home and all I want to do is relax for a while. I keep buying meat and forgetting to make it or defrost it, so when I was reminded of this easy dish, made with a can of tuna I couldn’t wait to try it. And an added bonus, it doesn’t require condensed soups like many other recipes. Canned soups often contain ridiculous amounts of sodium and goodness knows what else. Making the sauce with a roux wasn’t more difficult than opening a can of soup. And to make things even easier, instead of using separate pans I made a well in the mushroom mixture to melt the butter and added the flour to make the roux. Then I mixed everything together and cooked it for a minute before adding the milk and broth. The sauce thickened up just fine. Flavour wise, it has the same down home appeal as the chicken pot pie I made last week. It’s a keeper!
Tuna Noodle Casserole
Active time: 1 hr Start to finish: 1 1/2 hr
1 medium onion, finely chopped
4 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
10 oz mushrooms, trimmed and sliced 1/4 inch thick (4 cups)
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1/4 cup Sherry
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 cup whole milk
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 (6-oz) can tuna in olive oil, drained
6 oz dried curly egg noodles (preferably Pennsylvania Dutch style; about 3 1/4 cups)
1 1/2 cups coarse fresh bread crumbs (from 3 slices firm white sandwich bread)
4 oz coarsely grated Cheddar (1 cup)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 375°F. Butter a shallow 2-quart baking dish.
Cook onion in 1 1/2 tablespoons butter with a pinch of salt in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately low heat, covered, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Increase heat to moderately high and add mushrooms, then sauté, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms begin to give off liquid, about 2 minutes. Add soy sauce and continue to sauté mushrooms, stirring, until liquid mushrooms give off is evaporated. Add Sherry and boil, stirring occasionally, until evaporated. Remove from heat.
Melt remaining 3 tablespoons butter in a 2- to 3-quart heavy saucepan over moderately low heat and whisk in flour, then cook roux, whisking, 3 minutes. Add broth in a stream, whisking, and bring to a boil, whisking. Whisk in milk and simmer sauce, whisking occasionally, 5 minutes. Stir in mushroom mixture, lemon juice, and salt. Flake tuna into sauce and stir gently. Season sauce with salt and pepper.
Cook noodles in a 5- to 6-quart pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Drain noodles in a colander and return to pot. Add sauce and stir gently to combine. Transfer mixture to baking dish, spreading evenly.
Toss together bread crumbs and cheese in a bowl. Drizzle with oil and toss again, then sprinkle evenly over casserole. Bake until topping is crisp and sauce is bubbling, 20 to 30 minutes.
Source: Gourmet magazine, May 2004