Thursday, April 06, 2006

Revisiting Tuna Casserole

The Camera Issue... still

Ben: What do you think?
Me: (distractedly) Of what?
Ben: Of dinner. This is SO good. Haven't you tasted it yet?
Me: No. I haven't had a bite of it yet.
Ben: (in an annoyed voice) Well if you'd put down your camera for a second you might actually find out what your creations taste like.

Hallmarks of My Childhood #2

I've been keening for a bit of childhood comfort food for a while. My crazy life the last couple of weeks made me too tired to concentrate on "Me Food" but I craved it nonetheless. Now that I can breathe again I will be revisiting some childhood favourites (Hmm... anything to do with birthday issues perhaps?). First on my agenda is Tuna Casserole. With a bit of tweaking I made it my own but still kept the basics.

Tuna Casserole Revampoli

1 cup uncooked pasta (I prefer shells)
1 tbsp butter
2/3 cup onion, diced
2/3 cup zucchini, sliced and quartered
1 can cream of celery soup
1/2 cup light cream
1 cup canned tuna, flaked and drained
1/2 cup defrosted peas
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup grated smoked cheddar

Cook noodles. Drain. Meanwhile, melt butter in skillet on medium low heat. Add onions and stir for one to two minutes. Add zucchini slices. Cook until zucchini translucent and onions are starting to brown. Add soup, milk, flaked tuna, peas, salt and pepper. Stir to mix well. Add cooked noodles. Stir in. Pour mixture into a greased baking dish. Sprinkle cheddar over top. Bake for 25 minutes at 350.


Cyndi said...

Oooh this looks good. I've been wanting tuna casserole, too, but didn't want the plain old tuna/noodle/peas/mushroom soup mixture. I'm going to try this soon.
In your comment on my blog you thought I was in Texas--no, just the meat is done Texas-style (from my Texan mom and aunt), I'm in the mountains of southern California. At 6000 feet, whenever it rains in so cal, we usually get snow. Love your blog--it's going on my links!

Michele said...

Yum! I love tuna casserole, the ultimate comfort food!

Nerissa said...

cyndi: Can't say that I've ever known tuna casserole with mushroom soup. Probably my great distaste of mushrooms sinche childhood that made my mother go elsewhere.

michele: It is indeed!

michelle said...

Wow, what a presentation! I would think that tuna casserole would be tough to make look beautiful, but yours does. This is also a very nostalgic recipe for me too - I'm going to try your version b/c mom's was from a box!

The camera conversation happens at our house too - that, and sometimes even cold food trying to get that perfect picture (ooops)!

Nerissa said...

It's nice to read your comment after hearing the tactless comment Ben made about the top picture. I hope it turns out well for you (still incapable of understanding tuna casserole from a box... not in my mom's house! God forbid!)

I think the problem with the pictures is that we are trying to recreate food porn like we see in cooking mags and books. I'm sure the food in those pictures is just for the "porn" only, not for eating too (like ours). Yes?

Melissa CookingDiva said...

Nerissa!!! This looks delicious, I have just had my dosis of carbs for the week LOL! I do indulge myself once in a while, but not like I used to do.
Have a beautiful Sunday :)

Nerissa said...

Melissa: Thanks! Hope you have a great Sunday too.

iamchanelle said...

hi nerissa! so nice to "meet" you! thanks for stopping by my totally makes my day to get a comment!

we, too have the same conversations here when i am setting up for a food photo shoot as everyone is trying to sit and eat. i usually take my plate over to the living room (the natural light is best there) so i don't get made fun of. at least not until i return to the table...haha!

s'kat said...

Nerissa, I can't wait to see your pie! Congrats!

michelle said...

Yes to your comment above. A whole-hearted YES. Our food WAY better mag porn food with glue, hairspray, shine serum and other non-edible gobbly-gook on it!

Nerissa said...

You might want to look at a book called "Dishing with Style" by Rori Trovato, michelle. It's by a food stylist who has a horror of what she seems to refer to as the old-school method of food presentation (Elmer's glue, dish-soap, motor-oil.. EWwww) In her book she presents a number of dishes and presents them in two ways to show how food can be brought to the table as well as giving a few stylist secrets about dish colours versus food colours, food shape vs dish shape. I like the book a lot because the food looks great in the pictures AND they don't look horribly elaborate to create. Now taking the pictures the same way... that's a whole different story.