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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Aunt Vel's Tuna Casserole!

 
 
 
When I was a little girl, I used to stay with my Aunt Vel sometimes, when my mother had things to do and couldn't take me with her.  Aunt Vel is one of my mother's five sisters and she conveniently lived just right down the street from us.  I always liked to stay with her, because she was a lot like Mama, she was a wonderful cook, but I soon figured out that aunts were much more lenient on nieces than mothers were on daughters...lol.  I could always get away with a little more with the Aunties than Mama would ever put up with.  Isn't that always the case though?  I know I am the same way with my nieces and nephews.  It's sort of like a grandparent who is just closer to your parent's ages. 
 
One particular afternoon that I went to stay with Aunt Vel, I thought I would be going home before supper time, but the afternoon got late and I could see that I would be staying for dinner, which was ok with me.  Aunt Vel cooked a lot like Mama, but it seemed she had different things than we did sometimes so it was interesting.   This afternoon, she started getting things out for preparing dinner and she asked me if I like tuna casserole.  My face must have said "no way", but I doubt I said that, because that would be rude.  My face has always betrayed me though.  I do not have a poker face and never have.   Aunt Vel assured me I would like this tuna casserole.  I just had to try it and then if I didn't like it, she would fix me a sandwich or something.   That sounded reasonable. I would not have had that option at home...lol.   
 
It seemed like this tuna casserole was in the oven in seconds and as it cooked, it was smelling pretty good, I had to admit.  Of course, liver and onions smelled good frying, and I knew from several horrifying experiences how bad they could be.  But when this 'tuna casserole' came out of the oven and it was presented to me for tasting, it looked so good and cheesy and creamy.  Once I tasted it, I had to admit, it was delicious.  It tasted nothing like the tuna salad I detested.  It didn't even taste like tuna really.  I ended up eating two big servings.  It was my new favorite "Aunt Vel food".   I still, to this day have favorite Aunt Vel foods, we all do.  One of her great grandsons told me this past summer that his Nanny, his name for her, always has the best food at her house. I remember thinking that at his age also.  
 
This is what you will need for Aunt Vel's Tuna Casserole:
 
1 large can tuna, drained and flaked (I use white albacore tuna)
8 oz. egg noodles, cooked according to pkg. directions and drained
1 medium onion, diced fine
2 Tbs. butter
1 cup milk
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 cup green peas, canned or frozen (optional)
2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
1 sleeve Ritz crackers, crushed and tossed with 3 Tbs. melted butter (optional)
 
Saute onion in butter in a skillet large enough to mix all of the casserole ingredients.  Add the mushroom soup and milk and mix well.  Stir in the tuna, noodles and peas.  
 
Pour all in a 2 quart casserole you have sprayed well with nonstick spray.   Cover the top with shredded cheese.   At this point you can cover the top with a sleeve of crushed Ritz crackers mixed with 3 Tbs. melted butter.  That is an optional step and Aunt Vel's recipe doesn't call for it, but I added them because they entice my husband to eat things, he might not otherwise...lol.   Place in  350 degree oven for about 30 to 35 minutes or until hot and bubbly.
 
 
Aunt Vel's Tuna Casserole!

 
 
 
 



20 comments:

  1. Oh I love tuna noodle! My recipe has celery and red peppers but no peas or cracker crumb crust. Your recipe sounds wonderful and I think I'll give it a try. I have a Cordon Bleu degree but, you know, these old hand-me-down favorites are so much better. :)

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  2. I CRUSH POTATOE CHIPS AND PUT THEM ON TOP INSTEAD OF RITZ CRACKERS...

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  3. My Mom's tuna casserole recipe was pretty much the same as this one - except she used crushed potato chips instead of crackers - we loved it but only got to have it when my parents went out and left this for the sitter to feed us!
    If memory serves me correctly we were pretty upset if she left anything but this for us to have for dinner. LOL good memories!

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  4. Thanks so much. Fixed your sticky chicken for supper last night and it was a hit, put in my keepers. Thanks for sharing some great recipes.

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  5. This looks wonderful. I can't wait to try it. Thank you

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  6. What size can of tuna do you use?

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    Replies
    1. The recipe said a large can..

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  7. I use crushed cornflakes to top mine. Mix the flakes with about 3tbs or so of butter per cup.

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  8. Look at here, im going to try all of these recipes. Thanks again i love food....lol. Growing up my neighbor lived behind us and she use to make TEA CAKES they were like cookies... I wish i can find someone who knw how to make them....THANKS AGAIN FOR THE RECIPES, ESPECIALLY THE SLOW COOKER ONE

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    Replies
    1. tea cakes, like Russian tea cakes? (powdered sugar coated round balls?) they're called Mexican wedding cakes also

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    2. 4 cups all-purpose flour plus more for rolling
      1 teaspoon baking soda
      2 teaspoons baking powder
      2 cups sugar
      2 eggs
      1/2 cup buttermilk
      1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter, softened
      1 teaspoon vanilla

      mix dry ingredients the mix in wet.. frig for one hour in frige then roll and cut in forms of you liking

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  9. Any ideas for substituting the noodles? I have to eat gluten-free and haven't found any GF egg noodles. Think I could use GF fettucine?

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    Replies
    1. There's a pretty good selection of veggetable pasta now....I guess I'm not sure if its gluten freebut I used to buy it uuntil my daughter grew out of some food allergies... they're tasty too, might be worth checking out :)

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  10. For the person looking for a gluten-free alternate, try zucchini! Sounds weird, but I made lasagne & a stir fry dish with them & even my husband, who isn't crazy about zucchini, loved them. I used a mandolin slicer to slice very thin slices for the lasagne & added the julienne slicer for the stir fry "noodles". After slicing, place them in a colander & salt them, then let them drain for 20-30 min., then I put mine on a towel to remove as much moisture as possible, then use as you would regular noodles. For a baked dish, no pre-cooking is needed, for the stir fry, I sauted them in a bit of coconut oil for about 4-5 min. The only problem I had was with the lasagne, it was a bit "soupy" from the moisture in the zucchini. Next time, I plan to be sure the sauce is as thick as possible & maybe drain the "noodles" a bit longer before using.

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  11. Silver noodles, gluten ftee, can be purchased at Asian suoermarkets as well as some health conscious grocery stores. Great substitue for pasta

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  12. My mom puts pimentos in hers and french fried onions at the last 5 min. Instead of the ritz

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  13. Another GREAT recipe made your Tuna Casserole recipe and it was a hit another one added to my recipe rotation. I have another tuna casserole I make called Southwestern Tuna Casserole but this one add some variety.

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