Thursday, January 30, 2014

Experimenting in the Kitchen: BLT Salad Sandwich & Tuna Casserole

Hello, darlings! I normally don't spend much time on Darling Dear talking about food. Yes, Darling Dear is a lifestyle blog and while I consider myself a frustrated foodie (as in I normally can't cook & don't really even have the interest but I LOVE food.), I just haven't really spent much time with it on the blog. And while I don't really see that changing in the future, I do want to spend today talking about two yummy things I made. 
Yup! You read right, *I* made it! Hehe. If you know anything about me, I don't really cook. I eat a lot of box and canned and frozen foods normally. Which, is superrr good for you, right? ;) & When I do branch out and cook, it's not much. I just don't like cooking, really. I'm a bit lazy (see really lazy) and I often don't even have the time to devote to it. 
But over the last few months, I've started to, very slowly, come around to the idea. I look at is as experimentation, and the science nerd in me is all about that. I hardly ever measure things out & don't really know what is "supposed" to go together so I just try things and see what I like and don't like. And weirdly enough, I'm actually pretty good at it. I've even got a little journal started with a few recipes I've made. 
Like most well conducted experiments, I start with researching ideas for meals I want to try, flavors that might sound interesting and spices I've never tried. So for instance, yesterday, I wanted to make this BLT wrap that I'd thought about earlier in the week when I was planning my meals at the grocery shop. But of course, I forgot to get dressing. So I have no idea what I'm going to put on it. Enter Pinterest research session #87,094. 
There were a billion ideas, but what seemed the most interesting to me was a creamy dressing. But I don't have any & I really want a dang BLT. So I made one. I had a bit of an idea of what other people used to make their own cream dressings, and even found one that was a good starting point.
And it just went from there. I ended up making two yummy dishes yesterday that'll be used off and on for the rest of the week. ( I cook a lot at once so I don't have to cook often.) Tuna casserole & BLT salad. 
In case you were interested in giving either of them a try, I've included my recipes below. <3 & I finished the meal off with some fresh raspberries & PBJJ crackers. (Peanut butter & a local jalapeƱo jam that is so YUM.) I'm pretty fond of this little meal & would love to know if any of you give it a try and if you have similar experiences with cooking? What kinds of things do you make? What's your current favorite? 

Tuna Casserole: 
* 1 package of rotini pasta 
* 1 can of cream of mushroom or chicken (Though, next time, I'll probably try two cans as I like mine a bit creamier then this batch.) 
* 1 can of evaporated milk
*1 1/2 cups of shredded mild cheddar 
* 2 cans of tuna (I recommend you get the ones that are soaked in water, not oils.) 
* Ritz crackers (to taste) 
* Salt, Pepper, Onion Powder, Garlic Powder (to taste) 
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*First cook the pasta until it's nearly done, immediately drain 
*While the past is cooking, mix all other ingredients in a bowl
*Then mix in pasta, until thoroughly coated 
*Cook for 30-35 minutes at 350 degrees 
*Take out & stir casserole
* If desired, add crushed crackers and bake for another 5-7 minutes. 

Creamy Dressing
*3/4 cup of 1% milk (or whatever milk you prefer)
* 2 tbsp low-fat plain greek yogurt
* 2 tbsp light-sour cream 
* 2 tbsp light mayo with olive oil 
*salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic to taste 
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*mix all well in bowl
*cover and let stand in fridge for 30 min, stir 

BLT Sandwich // Salad
* 1 cup finely chopped spinach 
*1/2 cup diced cherry tomatoes 
*1/4 cup diced bacon 
*1/2 shredded cheddar 
*1/2 cup home made creamy dressing (See above) 
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*cook bacon to preference, then let cool 
*chop fresh ingredients 
*mix all ingredients 
*let sit in fridge for 20 minutes
*add onto toasted sourdough (or whatever bread you prefer or just my itself) 

1 comment:

  1. yum yum! if you overcook the pasta a little then it won't soak up as much sauce and you get a creamier pasta in the end— just throwing that out there in case you want a different option than adding more stock to the recipe. apparently it is an old southern mac & cheese trick that keeps everything all creamy and gooey and wonderful. i mean, not to be a know it all or anything, you just mentioned not being that into cooking so i thought i'd share my little trick <3

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-Zie