Tuna Noodle Casserole

Yes You Can: Make a Luscious Tuna Noodle Casserole

Tuna Noodle Casserole

Luscious Tuna Noodle Casserole, a Gould family recipe!

The cold and rain have returned to Portland, which means it’s soup and casserole weather, yay! I love a good casserole–they’re typically easy to make and feed a crowd. And oh I love to pull out the Campbell’s Cream of soups. They just feel cozy. This tuna noodle casserole comes from my friend Tiffany Gould, who graciously shared her family recipe with us, and it is fantastic: rich, creamy, and satisfying. It’s also huge.

Plus, like any good casserole, it’s flexible, allowing for the addition of whatever’s in your fridge. For instance, I made the casserole pictured above with egg noodles (instead of extra-large macaroni), ricotta (instead of sour cream), and thyme (in place of parsley), and it still retained its ineffably delicious character. Make it tonight!

Tuna Noodle Casserole

Serves 12

You Need:
2 cans white albacore tuna, drained
12 oz. extra-large macaroni, cooked and drained (if you use egg noodles, use 1 lb)
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 cup sour cream
Pepper (to taste)
Parsley (to taste)
3 cups grated cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook noodles in large pot according to directions on package and grate cheese. When noodles are done, drain and set aside. Combine tuna (you may need to chunk it up a bit), cream of chicken soup, and cream of mushroom soup in the pot used to boil noodles. Then add sour cream, pepper and parsley to taste; the measurements above are just an estimate, not exact.

Next, stir in the noodles and 2/3 of the grated cheese. Add milk until the mixture stirs easily; keep in mind the casserole will lose moisture as it cooks. Pour into a 9″ x 13″ pan, cover with the remainder of the grated cheese, and sprinkle breadcrumbs on the top.

Cover pan with foil and place in oven. Cook at 350 degrees for 15 minutes, and then check to see if the cheese has melted and the casserole is bubbling. If so, remove foil and cook for about another 15 minutes, until cheese on top has golden brown spots.

Variations: Add in leftovers from the refrigerator that need to be used in place of the milk, sour cream or cheese (cream cheese, buttermilk, cream, alfredo sauce, cottage cheese, ranch dressing). Parmesan cheese sprinkled on top with the bread crumbs tastes great, too.

Big thanks to Tiffany Gould and her family for bringing this recipe into our lives! Do you have a go-to casserole recipe? Post it below!

Peanut Noodles With Shrimp

Heavenly Peanut Noodles With Shrimp

Peanut Noodles With Shrimp

Yummy yummy yummy!

Peanut noodles with shrimp is one of my favorite things to eat these days: crunchy, satisfying, and flavorful, it’s perfect for summer–and good warm or cold. This is based on Leanne Brown’s Cold (and Spicy?) Asian Noodles from Good and Cheap, with a few tweaks of my own. You can easily make it vegan by substituting tofu for shrimp!

I recently made this for some friends who just had a baby, thinking it was the perfect thing to eat on the fly (since you don’t have to heat it up). Both parents immediately texted me asking for the recipe, so I thought I’d jot it down here!

This is very simple to put together. You can substitute your favorite peanut sauce if you don’t care to make it.

Peanut Noodles With Shrimp

Serves 6 Generously

You Need:
12 oz dried spaghetti, soba, or any Asian noodles (I used somen)
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
Green parts of a bunch of green onions, chopped
1 cucumber, halved lengthwise and seeded, half sliced into half-moons, half sliced lengthwise into thin strips and cut crosswise into one-inch pieces
1 lb large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tsp vegetable oil
Peanut sauce (see recipe below)
1/4-1/2 cup chopped cilantro, to taste (also great with fresh mint!)
Sriracha, to taste

Prepare the noodles according to the package directions and rinse thoroughly with cold water. Place in a bowl and add the soy sauce, sesame oil, green onions, and cucumbers, mixing gently.

Heat 1 tsp of vegetable oil in a large nonstick pan over medium heat and add the shrimp. Cook, stirring often, until pink and just cooked through–about 5 minutes. Remove shrimp to a plate. Make peanut sauce.

Peanut Sauce

Makes About 1 Cup

You Need:
White and light-green parts of a bunch of green onions, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp vegetable oil
2 tsp red curry paste
1/2 cup coconut milk
2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp tumeric
1/2 cup peanut butter (creamy or chunky)

Place the nonstick pan from the shrimp back over medium heat and add 1 tsp vegetable oil. Add the minced onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant. Add the curry paste and cook, stirring. Then add the coconut milk, brown sugar, soy sauce, turmeric, and peanut butter, cooking and stirring until combined. Remove from heat.

Add the shrimp and peanut sauce to the noodle mixture and mix gently. Stir in cilantro. Either eat immediately or chill for a couple of hours. Serve with sriracha to taste!

Your Potluck and New Baby Go-to: El Dorado Casserole

Juanitas Tortilla Chips

I don’t have a casserole picture! I’ll have to take one next time. But use Juanita’s chips, if you can!

El Dorado casserole was so prevalent in our family growing up that I refused to make it for years–especially when I got into Martha Stewart and “real cooking” in college. This was a main dish made with crushed tortilla chips and canned sliced olives! I certainly could not make it for other people!

But El Dorado casserole is comfort food in the extreme–beefy, creamy, cheesy, salty, and crunchy.

I believe this was either my Grandma Benge’s or Great-Grandma Potter’s recipe, and it was always the go-to dish when I was a child. Mom liked to make it when we were expecting out-of-town company, which I never understood as a young adult–couldn’t we make something fancier? Now I see: it appeals to virtually anyone, feeds a crowd, and can be ready and waiting to pop in the oven at a moment’s notice–especially handy in pre-cell phone times, when we were never quite sure when our road-tripping guests’ car would pull up.

My snobbishness about El Dorado casserole cracked when I made it as a backup dish for a huge dinner for a group (it is awfully handy). My friend Caroline glared at me as she scarfed it up, demanding, “Why haven’t you ever made this for me before?!?”

So make this and bring it to potlucks, freeze it and gift it to baby-having friends, and–of course–use it to welcome out-of-town guests and torment teenage would-be foodies.

El Dorado Casserole

Serves 8-12

You Need:

1 lb. ground beef
1 Tbsp. minced onion (I usually use a whole onion)
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
15 oz. can tomato sauce
1 cup sliced ripe olives
1 cup sour cream (I accidentally doubled this once and I’ve always made it that way going forward)
1 cup cottage cheese (ditto)
1 4-oz. can green chiles
Monterey jack cheese, grated (there’s never been a published measurement, just have at least 2 cups)
1 8-oz package tortilla chips, crushed (I just start crushing chips–Juanita’s, of course–from a big bag and layer as needed)

Heat your oven to 350 degrees. Brown meat in a pan and add onion, garlic salt, and tomato sauce. Combine the next four ingredients in a separate bowl.

Place a layer of crushed tortilla chips in a greased 8″ x 13″ casserole dish. Layer on half of the meat mixture, top with half of the sour cream mixture, and then sprinkle on a layer of cheese. Repeat with chips, meat mixture, sour cream mixture, and cheese. Top with additional chips.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes. We usually had this with salad on the side, and if we were at my Grandma Benge’s, she would make sure to save any leftover (dressed!) salad in the fridge, which I attributed to her living through the Depression. Listen, I said I was snobby already.