Hello party people! I am so excited to share this very Midwestern-y recipe with you guys as it was immediately declared a hubby favorite. While I love stepping outside of my norm by trying new cooking methods and exploring new flavors (like I did recently by making Israeli pickled vegetables and turmeric and ginger pork tonkatsu) – I almost always come back to a good old fashioned casserole or meatloaf eventually. 😉
Since the weather has gotten colder (yaassssssss!!!) I absolutely crave cozy, hearty meals like this one. I don’t think I’ve eaten tuna noodle casserole since my college roommates and I would make the kind out of a box as drunk food (how weird is that)? But the other day I HAD to have it. So I decided to poke around my pantry and fridge and see what I could throw together to make my own version that was a little more adult-y than the boxed kind.
We ended up really digging this recipe (and trust me folks, they’re not all winners – so I mean it when I say so). With a creamy cheese sauce, a brine-y ping of flavor from the capers, tender tuna and herby crusty breadcrumbs this casserole hit all the casserole must-haves you expect. Yum-arific.
1 lb extra wide egg noodles
6 tbs butter
1/2 cup flour
1 quart 2% milk
1 1/2 cups of Gruyere cheese
2 cups finely chopped broccoli
2 heaping tbs of capers
2 4 oz cans of albacore tuna, shredded with two forks to make into smaller pieces
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 pieces of bread (stale is great!)
4 tbs parsley
2 tbs melted butter
2 tbs chopped chives
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Get a large pot of salted water boiling to cook the egg noodles. Cook until al dente while making the sauce below. Drain and set aside.
To make the sauce get a large dutch oven heated to medium heat and add the butter. Cook until melted, then add the flour, whisking until a roux is created. Cook for one minute, whisking constantly. Next add the milk slowly, and continue whisking over medium heat until well combined. Turn heat down to low and cook the sauce for an additional 5 minutes until smooth and thickened slightly. Remove from the heat and add the Gruyere cheese. You can substitute Swiss if you’d like. Mix the sauce and cheese together until the cheese is melted and the sauce is smooth.
Add the pasta, broccoli, capers, tuna, salt and pepper to the cheese sauce and stir together.
To make the topping of super-simple breadcrumbs, add the bread, melted butter and parsley to a food processor and pulse until breadcrumbs appear! I used wheat toast as that’s all I had on hand, but you can really use any kind of bread.
Pour the noodles and sauce into a large casserole dish and top with the breadcrumbs.
Cook in the oven for 30-35 minutes until the sauce is bubbling and the top is golden brown.
Top with fresh chives and serve up! I’ll be making this one again real soon y’all!