Friday, February 24, 2012

Tuna Casserole

Warm and gooey deliciousness!

Rich makes the ultimate comfort food: tuna casserole. Loaded with tuna and cheesy goodness and perfect for an after work weeknight or cold weekend. Or really any time. Because how delicious does this look? Pretty darn delicious.

Pasta shells
Cream of mushroom soup

Step 1. Not so hard, right?

Boil the pasta shells. You don't have to use shells, but don't they look fun? Plus they fit on forks quite nicely.

They really do look fun.

Drain the shells and run them under cold water to stop the cooking process. You'll be baking them so you don't want them to overcook and get soggy.

 It's only good cause of the cream of mushroom.

Mix the shells with a can of cream of mushroom soup, a cup of corn and 2-4 cans of tuna (depending on how meaty you want it...).


Top the thing with cheese and pop it in the oven! Bake it really hot, at like 400 degrees, because you just want the cheese to get bubbly and crispy, not overcook the pasta. Leave it in for about 20 minutes, or as long as it takes to get the level of cheesyness that you want.


We made this in a 8x8 pan for us two and it fed us fat kids twice (very generous portions both times). You could make this in a 13x9 pan for a family or company with 4 cans of tuna and 2 cans of cream of mushroom.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Mini Caprese Appetizer and Orzo Salad

Mini caprese salad

This is simple, quick, and elegant enough to show off. And it's pretty healthy!

Caprese Salad Ingredients:
Grape tomatoes
Mozzarella balls
Olive Oil
Balsamic Vinegar
Salt and pepper

Seriously, you just skewer a basil leaf in between a mozzarella ball and grape tomato with a toothpick. Arrange them on a plate and sprinkle with salt and pepper and douse in a little bit of olive oil and balsamic vinegar (more vinegar than oil, it's more delicious). Finger food!

Orzo Salad Ingredients:
Sun dried tomatoes
Black olives
Bell pepper
Goat cheese
Olive oil
Lemon juice

Prepare the orzo (boil, drain) chop the veggies and mix everything together! Ridiculously simple. Mix the whole thing with 1/3 cup of olive oil mixed with the juice from half a lemon. You can also add seasons, like salt and pepper, and maybe throw in a tablespoon of balsamic vinegar for a tang. Crumble goat cheese over the mixture and voila! The best thing about this dish is it can be served warm or cold.

Orzo with goat cheese and sun dried tomatoes

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Seared Ahi Tuna Steaks with Mashed Potatoes

Tuna, mashed potatoes and corn on the cob. Mmmm!

This is a deliciously impressive meal but is super easy to prepare. And delicious. Just want that part to be clear.

Ahi tuna steaks
Corn on the cob
Spices (garlic, pepper, salt)
Heavy cream

Let the tuna marinate with some pepper and garlic for a while. Don't overpower the tuna, though, because the flavor is good enough on its own. 

 They're so purdy!

While the tuna is sitting, peel and boil the potatoes. Gold potatoes can be boiled with the skins on, as long as you're ok with a slightly lumpy result. Boiling time will depend on the size of the potatoes you use (Russets are giant and take forever to cook, Golds are much smaller and boil faster, but this will easily be the most time consuming part of the meal regardless of what kind of potatoes you use).

 Naked Gold potatoes

While the potatoes are boiling, shuck the corn and boil them, too. The potatoes will be done when you can stick a fork in one and it goes in easily. Drain the water and mash the potatoes with a spoon (or a potato masher, if you have one). Mix in a little bit of the cream, as in, like, 1/4-1/3 cup (you can always add more if you want it to be creamier), and add salt, pepper and garlic. Mash to your heart's content.

 Super creamy mashed potatoes. With lots of garlic :)

Put a tiny little bit of butter in a very hot pan and put in your tuna steaks. When the bottom has a thin layer of done-ness flip it with tongs and do the same to the other side. Get a nice even layer of done-ness on both top and bottom and let the spices get really seared into the steak. Sesame seeds are really good for searing tuna, too.

Pink on the inside

When the tuna is done, drain the corn (forgot to take pictures of the corn, but really you just throw them in some boiling water until they're as soft as you want them to be, not exactly real hard), add some spices to taste and nom!

 If this doesn't impress, I don't know what will

We paired this meal with Karl Strauss 22nd Anniversary Vanilla Imperial Stout, which is ridiculously good. Karl Strauss is one of the top craft brewers in San Diego and they make some seriously tasty beers. Not a single one that I've had has been boring in the slightest, and the 22nd Anniversary was something Rich had been saving for a special occasion (tuna steak night was pretty special). 

Stouts and porters are the best, and vanilla anything is soooo good

This beer also makes a great dessert. It's thick, dark and just sweet enough with the vanilla for after meals. It's not regularly available, though, so if you're lucky enough to get your hands on it I hope you enjoy it.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Goat Cheese and Sun Dried Tomato Pizza

I'm pretty sure this was the first thing Rich and I made together, though that was back when we were just friends... we made it recently as a couple and we'll be making it again and again because it's delicious (and my favorite pizza!).

Pizza dough
Pizza sauce (I omit this like, half the time)
Goat cheese
Sun dried tomatoes
Black olives

We used herb dough!

Follow the instructions on the dough package for preparation. Let it rise for about 20 minutes on a floury surface and then knead and roll it into the shape you want. If you use a rolling pin flour it so the dough doesn't stick to it. 

Keep the sauce away from the edges so you can eat it.

Make sure your dough is even and reaches the edges of your pan otherwise it will curl away as it bakes, and sauce and cheese can fall into the oven. Spread the dough evenly with the pizza sauce and crumble the goat cheese over it. (You can also put some shredded mozzarella on the goat cheese for extra melty, but it's not necessary.)

Crimini mushrooms

Chop the olives and mushrooms and toss them on the pizza with the sun dried tomatoes. Try not to make the middle of the pizza too heavy or cutting it will be nearly impossible.

Make it colorful :)

Bake at 350 degrees until the cheese is bubbly and the edges of the dough are browned (like 20-25 minutes).

Mmmm toasty!

Well, I started out writing this around 9:30pm, already having decided I would not snack even though snacking is the only thing I've been thinking about, and now I'm full on hungry. Maybe we'll make this again this weekend...