Thursday, February 18, 2010

Tuna Bean Dream Cassarole

   How I get giggles every time I remember how this recipe was created. We had moved to Scotland and lived in a beautiful condo.  This condo was situated in an old Mill on a lovely river.  Swans floated by everyday as we sat on our balcony and had our tea.  It was a dreamy place to live. Dreamy that is, UNTIL bad weather sat in. In winter, we often couldn't make it up the steep hill with the car to the main road. One day in the middle of a snow squall Mac walked in and opened the refrigerator.
"We don't have anything in here to eat," he announced and closed the door with a thud.
I opened the refrigerator and poked my head in. "Looks like you are right," I agreed. "Let's go to the market."
We got the car out and headed up the dirt road. Halfway up the car got stuck on the hill. Mac spun the wheels in desperation. He must have been hungry.
"Perhaps we shouldn't pursue this any farther," I helpfully suggested.
"We'll starve," said Mac sadly.
"Nonsense, I will think of something.  Besides I can make Tuna Cassarole."
Mac raised his eyebrows. "I really don't like Tuna Cassarole," he replied.

Did I mention that once in awhile Mac can be the bane of my exsistence?  Now was one of those moments.
He pouted all the way home as we trudged through the ever deepening snow.
Okay I get it!  He really didn't want Tuna Cassarole.
I muttered to myself as I opened the pantry door to take stock in what I had.  I have long debated whether this cassarole was a stroke of genius or just plain bad temper.  I pulled ingredients off the pantry shelves in a huff.  I put some pasta twists on to boil. Next I threw a colander in the sink and started opening cans.  First the chick peas, then the kidney beans....what the heck, why not throw the corn in for good measure?  I was on a roll. I figured by then Mac wouldn't even notice the tuna fish. I drained the pasta and combined it with the colander ingredients. Mushroom soup would do nicely to stick it all together I thought.  I found some Kraft  Four cheese Mexican and wacked a cup of cheese into the mix.  I tasted...HMMMMM. It was a bland.  Wait..curry disguises everything!  I measured out a tablespoon of hot madras curry into the mix followed by a half teaspoon of Lawry's seasoned salt. Just to be mean I threw a handful of French Fried Onions on top. Everyone who knows Mac, KNOWS he can't abide seeing an onion.  I figured at the very least I would appear heroic when I offered to eat them off his serving.
It looked almost edible. I decided I better try to make the plate pretty to butter Mac up. Firstly, because he was eating a form of tuna cassarole and secondly, now I was feeling a bit guilty over the onions.

I thought maybe if I arranged  the peppers into a flower on his plate he might forgive me in two or three years.
We sat at the table.  He stared at his plate. He sat there so long I wondered if he was frozen at the horror of it all.

Finally he started eating.  He began eating faster.  "Why this is actually good."
I took a bite. "It's not inedible," I said.
"It's like comfort food and I like it," he exclaimed.

So from that day forward Mac gave the cassarole the thumbs up and asks for it often.

"So you really LIKE this cassarole and consider this comfort food?" I asked.
"Yes, I do."
"Mmmm,"  I murmured.
He sat back and looked at me. "So what do you consider to be a comfort food?"
I smiled my special little smirk.... the one I reserve just for him.  I leaned toward him and whispered "LOBSTER!"
He started to laugh.  "I forgot I married a Mainah!" he said.


1 comment:

  1. This made me laugh right out loud. I can see Mac now, staring at his plate with a debate raging in his head...."should I? shouldn't I?"
    I'd entitle this recipe "Dare to be Different" - ha ha ha! This is definitely not one of the comfort dishes that would appear at one of our good ole Maine public suppahs! It gets an "A" for originality though.