Monday, February 8, 2010

More Seat-of-the-Pants Recipes

So, I've been hankering for tuna casserole, but didn't know if Donnie ate tuna.  He said he did, but didn't know if he'd eat it in a casserole.  Either way, I thought I'd try it.  I surfed the internet a bit to see how people make theirs and decided I wanted to make mine differently, but at least I found out how long to bake it and all that.  So, here goes....

Keep in mind, nothing is actually measured, so you'll have to use your imagination.

What went in it:
Maybe a half a bag of noodles (maybe more)
2 cans of tuna in oil-drained (I don't do diet food)
1 can of cream of celery soup
1/2 cup of milk (if you like it creamier, add a little more milk)
A hefty dose of garlic powder
A good dose of seasoned pepper
Maybe about 1/3 cup Italian bread crumbs to mix in
Shredded mozzarella-however much you want (if you shred your own, which I did, take a knife and lop of a piece for a little snack)
Feel free to add chopped onions and celery.  I don't think Donnie likes them, so I didn't put them in mine.

While the noodles are cooking, mix all the rest of the stuff in a large bowl and preheat the oven to 375.  When the noodles are done, drain them and mix them with the rest of the stuff.

Dump it all into a covered casserole dish.  Toss some more bread crumbs on top and sprinkle til you're happy with parmesan cheese.

Bake it with the lid on to hold in the moisture for 20 minutes of so or until the top turns a little golden. It will be moist, but not gooey.  I don't care for gooey!

Donnie actually had a good helping and I had 2, so it suits my taste just fine.

And speaking of Donnie, he's learning about things he's never had before like Earl Grey tea with cream and sugar, turkey bacon burgers, spaghetti mostly made from scratch with seasoned browned meat and using an altered version of Hunt's Zesty & Spicy sauce  sprinkled with parmesan in a casserole dish, baked in the oven and served with 9 grain Italian bread and salted olive oil.  There's crunchy-skinned baked potatoes with butter, sour cream, and bacon bits and tons of salads mixed in there too.  There's the flavored hot chocolates topped with whipped cream that are actually served in the previously unused appropriate cups and saucers, maple-pecan oatmeal cookies, and last night's treat was dark chocolate covered pecans.

While all of this might sound ordinary to people who know what a kitchen is for, these are never-been-seen-before events at our house.  So far there's been no rocket science involved and I don't know about him, but I'm feeling considerably better than when we ate frozen food and take out all the time.  Besides, I'm having fun using all those kitchen gadgets that I collected up years ago but never had the time or inclination to use.

And WHAT???  It's snowing again!  About 2 inches worth since 3:00.  It's not freezing so it'll probably be gone tomorrow, but it makes me want to bake cookies.  I just can't decide if I want peanut butter, sugar, or chocolate chip.  Decisions, decisions. :)


  1. Christie it's a delight to read of your cooking ventures. I know that it makes me feel better when I'm in my kitchen cooking. I can be having a bad day and all is right with the world when I get lost in my own world of cooking. I really do enjoy reading about your newfound interest!! Keep them coming.

  2. I'm surprised that so far everything has been edible. I've known I wanted to play in the kitchen for several years but never really had the time or a reason to do it. I had neighbors and co-workers who sold Pampered Chef and Tupperware, so I have just about every kitchen trinket known to man. It's fun to actually be able to put them to use.

    Donnie's a hoot though. You know he has all these vintage appliances and worships that stove like it was the holy cow (not to mention all the perfectly shiny Wolfgang Puck cookware without so much as a waterspot on them) but last night he actually said "I can't believe I'm letting someone use my stove...AND LIKING IT! He's so silly.

  3. To me the kitchen is the heart of a home! Now Pecan Place is complete. Keep creating and enjoying your time there. I love Pampered Chef stuff. I have alot of their gadgets too. Donnie likes to eat evidently more than he likes his vintage appliances!! Good for him. You guys have fun. You've earned that right as hard as you all work!

  4. LOL. If I don't get a job soon and keep adding to my inventory of edible stuff and get one or two more bedrooms in working order (which wouldn't take much) you know what that might lead to. Donnie's not liking the nationwide job hunt, so as much as he doesn't want to, he might eventually give in to having the occasional paying guest just so he can have real meals every night. I've subtly introduced the subject and I think he's considering it-not as an all out B&B, but as a private venue. I guess we'll see.

  5. Christie,
    Put me down as a paying guest at the B & B. When do you open? (smiling)
    Mrs. D