Monday, February 16, 2009

Tuna Casserole

Of course, this is just my macaroni and cheese recipe with the meat, vegetable, and type of pasta changed. If I change anything, it might just be the type of cheeses for the sauce. But it's really good...why mess with something that works! :)


2 cans tuna, drained
2 C frozen peas
3 T butter
3-4 T white rice flour (superfine)
2 C heavy cream
2 C chicken broth
2 tsp salt, plus more for water
1/4 tsp ground dry mustard
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3 T onion flakes
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 1/2 C grated sharp white cheddar cheese
1 1/2 C grated medium cheddar
1 1/2 C grated monterey jack
1 1/2 C grated Jarlsberg
1 C grated Parmesan
1 pound gluten free pasta (I like to use rotini)


Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly oil a 3-quart casserole dish.

Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. When the butter bubbles, add the rice flour. Cook, stirring (best to use a wire whisk), for about 1 minute. While whisking, slowly pour in the cream a little at a time to keep mixture smooth, until the mixture bubbles and becomes thick. Continue cooking, and add the chicken broth a little at time while whisking constantly, until the mixture has the thickness and consistency of paint. You don't want it to be too thick, because it will thicken when you add the cheese. Note: you may not need to add all of the broth to reach the right consistency.

Remove the pan from the heat. Stir in salt, dry mustard, black pepper, garlic powder, onion flakes, all of the Parmesan and MOST of the other cheeses (reserve a little of the grated cheddars and Jarlsberg to sprinkle on top); set the cheese sauce aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta until al dente (i.e., until the outside of the pasta is cooked and the inside is slightly underdone), about 7-8 minutes for most gluten free pastas, but it varies. Drain the pasta in a colander and return to the empty pot. Add the tuna, peas and cheese sauce to the pasta; mix well but gently.

Pour the mixture into the prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle the remaining grated cheddar cheese over the top. Bake until top is starting to turn golden brown in spots, about 20 - 25 minutes.

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