Saturday, January 7, 2012

Tuna Tetrazzini

Why is it that the post-holiday diet season arrives at the same exact time as winter comfort food season?

All winter long, I see visions of warm casseroles, savory stews and steamy soups when I ponder what to prepare for dinner.

Give me carbs ... creamy sauces ... melted cheese ... hearty vegetables ... and did I mention carbs?

But sometimes a little bit of compromise is needed to satisfy cravings and cut down post-holiday calorie overload.

It is possible to count calories and still enjoy seasonal favorites though!

An ingredient makeover can trim some of the carbs, fats and calories from heavy winter foods.

This Tuna Tetrazzini is an simple adaptation of a classic turkey tetrazzini. Turkey, roasted or boiled chicken or, gulp - little chunks ham - are also good options. This one of my favorite easy go-to casserole dinners, especially during cold winter months when it is such a comfort to dish up something ooey, gooey, stick to your ribs.

Dish up modest servings ... serve exactly as written here, if you are one of the lucky ones with no calorie issues ... or make your own substitutions for lower fats and/or carbs.

Let your conscious be your guide - and enjoy!

Please offer your own comments, substitutions or reviews of this recipe in the Post a Comment section right below the recipe.

8 oz. spaghetti, broken into 2” pieces (I use Dreamfields for lower carbs)
3 5-oz. cans tuna, drained (I use water packed canned or foil pouch tuna)
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms (I like sauteed fresh mushrooms)
1/2 cup chopped green or red bell pepper
1/2 cup sliced green olives (plain black ones work, or pitted kalamata are very nice!)
1/4 cup finely chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped artichoke hearts (plain or marinated)
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 can cream of mushroom soup, undiluted (substitute low-fat or low-sodium mushroom soup)
1 1/4 cups chicken broth (substitute low sodium)
1/4 cup white wine or sherry (optional, but a splash of white wine is my choice for tuna)
2 1/2 cups grated sharp cheddar cheese (use less cheese, or substitute low-fat cheese)

Cook spaghetti according to package directions and drain. In a large bowl, mix cooked spaghetti, tuna, mushrooms, pepper, olives, onion, artichoke hearts and ground pepper, plus 1 1/2 cups of cheese. Stir together mushroom soup, chicken broth and wine or sherry; pour over spaghetti mixture and stir to blend evenly. Pour mixture into lightly greased 13” x 9” baking dish. Sprinkle remaining cheese over top. Bake at 350 degrees until bubbly and lightly browned - about 45 minutes.


3 comments: said...

This sounds yummy...but I don't like using canned soups...too much sodium!!!

I wonder what else we could use?

Cora said...

Patty, I feel the same way about canned soups, but sometimes it's just faster and easier. I think I'd try a white sauce made with part milk and part chicken broth, flavored with maybe some Parmesan cheese and a good squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Mmmm... I might need to try that tomorrow! said...

Cora...thank you...that is an awesome idea!!!