LJWorld.com weblogs Shop Talk with Jenn and Julie

New Twist to Mom's Old Recipe


I don’t know why, but lately I’ve been feeling nostalgic in my cooking. Maybe it’s still the craving for comfort foods. I can’t explain it.

Maybe I’m missing my mom. We haven’t had a visit since July. Whatever the reason, today the Bumble Bee Tuna and No Yolk noodles coupons in the SmartSource insert had me thinking about one of my mom’s Lenten dishes. I've mentioned before, when I was growing up, my mom was a very creative cook on a limited budget. While I may not make the same dishes, her cooking has definitely inspired the way I cook today.

Mom never made tuna casserole. An Italian cook would never mix tuna in a creamy sauce. What she did make was a pasta dish with tuna in a light tomato sauce. I recently found a recipe that I feel is an updated version of this dish. Instead of tomato sauce, it calls for sundried tomatoes. Although, she probably would cringe at the cream added in this tuna recipe.



1 pound fettuccine (I’m substituting with egg noodles)

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 3 turns of the pan

4 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 small onion, chopped

2 (6-ounce) cans Italian tuna in water or oil, drained (I’m using Bumble Bee tuna)

1/2 cup tender sun-dried tomatoes, thinly sliced

1/2 cup dry white wine, a couple of turns of the pan

1/2 cup heavy cream, a couple of turns of the pan

Black pepper

1/2 cup frozen peas, a couple of handfuls

Couple handfuls grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

1 cup fresh basil, about 20 leaves, shredded


Place pasta water on to boil. Salt water then add pasta and cook to al dente.

While pasta cooks, heat a deep skillet over medium heat with extra-virgin olive oil. Saute garlic and onions until tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Add tuna and sun-dried tomatoes and stir to heat through, another 1 to 2 minutes. Add wine and cook it down a minute then add cream and season sauce with salt and pepper. Toss hot pasta and peas with sauce and cheese. Serve on dinner plates and top with shredded basil.

What are your favorite Lenten recipes?

Meanwhile, look for the SmartSource and RedPlum coupon inserts in today’s Journal-World. Great coupons to be clipped in both.


Robert Rauktis 8 years, 4 months ago

I always presumed Lent was a time of reflection so I fast rather than skirt the fine print like some Wall Street banker.

Katara 8 years, 4 months ago

I don't observe Lent (attitudes like the above have been pretty successful in keeping me out of the religious fold) but a lot of my co-workers do. I'll ask them for some of theirs & if they share, I'll post them.

Great idea, Julie! It is always interesting to see what type of dishes are served during religious observations.

kernal 8 years, 4 months ago

Maybe your mom would cringe because you both know it would be healthier without.

thrifter 8 years, 4 months ago

food isn't 'unhealthy' in moderation, especially cream.

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