Comforting Tuna Noodle Casserole

By • March 1, 2012 12 Comments

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Author Notes: I was introduced to this delicious food in college, and I couldn't believe I'd never liked it before-- after all, I'm not one to turn down pasta in any form. My mom used to make it occasionally, and I really don't remember liking it. But, dressed up with mushrooms and Marsala it becomes divine. I usually have all the ingredients in my pantry and I can whip it up on a day I don't want to venture outside. One of my favorite comfort foods, it's a dressed up mac and cheese!Meatballs&Milkshakes

Food52 Review: This is a clever take on mac n cheese. I loved the earthiness of the crimini mushrooms paired with the rosemary and tuna. The casserole is truly a sum of its ingredients; I could pleasantly taste all the components. It was creamy without being soupy. The recipe is spot on; all ingredients well balanced. The final mix fit nicely into an 8” by 8” gratin dish. It emerged bubbly, browned with the pasta cooked perfectly after 25 minutes. I used coarse homemade breadcrumbs which gave the topping a nice crunch. Panko would work too. I wouldn’t change a thing and will most certainly add this to my baked pasta repertoire.Gmarkb

Serves 4

  • 1/2 box small pasta such as egg noodles, mini shells, mini penne (8 oz.)
  • 2 cups sliced crimini mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon chopped rosemary
  • 1/4 cup Marsala wine (can sub white wine, but not as good)
  • 1 can good Italian tuna packed in oil, drained
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup grated cheddar
  • 1 cup grated parmesan
  • 1/4 cup breadcrumbs
  • truffle butter (optional)
  1. Cook the pasta in salted boiling water according to box instructions but stop about 5 minutes early and drain.
  2. Meanwhile, saute the mushrooms in a little olive oil until they have softened. Add the rosemary and toss through. Add the wine and continue to cook for 2 minutes.
  3. Combine the flour and butter in a separate pan and cook until the paste starts to brown. Add the milk and whisk so that there are no lumps. Add the chicken stock and whisk again. Add the mushroom mixture, the tuna, nutmeg, and about 3/4 of the cheeses. Reserve the rest of the cheese and combine with the breadcrumbs in another bowl.
  4. Add the cooked pasta to the sauce and stir through. Pour into a baking dish and top with the breadcrumbs mixture. If you have some truffle butter, you can dot the top with little bits of it. You may want to reserve it and add before serving as well. Bake at 400 degrees for 20-30 minutes, until it starts to get bubbly and browned on top.

More Great Recipes: Side Dishes|Pasta|Entrees|Meatballs

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