Jan got a temporary crown on Monday, so she is still eating soft foods. She asked for It’s Not a Tuna Casserole! for Thursday night’s dinner. This was not my first attempt to reinvent the American tuna casserole into something actually like food.
Category Archives: Casseroles
Adapted from a chef Manuel Azevedo recipe
Traditionally this dish is serves as a casserole. Chef Azevedo, born on the island of São Jorge in the Azores, turns this Portuguese dish upside down. This allows the exposed codfish to brown slightly and the layer of potatoes on the bottom to crisp.
Son-in-law, Chris, is leaving on another trip, so the kids are not coming over for Sunday dinner. Jan requested something forbidden by his ketogenic diet, lasagna. Since this is also our anniversary week (31st) I agreed to make it for her. I also made her favorite salad, carrot, to go with it.
I did a shepherd’s pie last week and I had this brain storm about an Indian shepherd’s pie, curry topped with cauliflower and potatoes. My guests last week were not into spices, so I put it off. This weekend my family definitely was and here is what I produced.
Before I left home for the first time, I sat down with my mother’s recipe box and wrote down my favorite dishes. Mom’s Cheese Strada apparently had eggplant in it (I don’t remember this being the case, but it is clear on the card that I typed up at the time). Since that time I have discovered that I am allergic to eggplant (No moussaka for you!), so I have rewritten the recipe to suit myself.
Adapted from Rachael Ray and Cook’s Illustrated Recipes.
Jan wanted turkey and I was planning to make a turkey tagine this Sunday. Myr, however, has spent the week dodging missiles in Israel, so she was a bit off Middle Eastern food. I quickly switched to making a Turkey Shepherd’s Pie. This led to another hitch, it is Thanksgiving week and you can buy all of the whole turkeys you want, but a package of turkey thighs was not to be found. I finally settled on smoked turkey legs as the base of my pie.
There are no bad lasagnas, only good and better lasagnas. This, and the fact that lasagna freezes well, keeps Stouffer’s in business. While each step of building a lasagna is not particularly difficult there are a lot of steps to the process. I use the term building, rather than making, because unlike most dishes where you put all of the ingredients in and stir, good lasagna is build layer by flavorful layer. While very delicious, lasagna should not be mistaken for a health food, even my low fat version is relatively high fat (lots of cheese and meat) and high in carbohydrates.
This is one of those dishes from my youth. Lasagna was a dish that my mother would make very occasionally, because while being good it is also very labor intensive. In addition to everything you have to do today, in my mother’s day you had to boil and cool the noodles enough so you could handle them (but not over boil or break them). With the introduction of no-boil noodles the process is slightly easier.
I never made lasagna myself until Cook’s Illustrated printed “Faster Lasagna” in their Sept.-Oct. 2002 issue, where they passed a favorable judgment on no-boil noodles. Since that time I have used their recipe as a guide, but as usual I had some standard changes to what they consider perfect (lower fat and lower salt and with all that cheese why would you add cream?). When Myr asked for lasagna last week I decided to write up my changes to the C.I. recipe.
For me this is a dish usually I make for friends who are having a medical crisis. At my age, this has happened with uncomfortable regularity. After it has cooled Continue reading