Making Tuna Pasta Bake

DSC_0023This recipe. My goodness, it is incredible!! We used to have it quite often with my step dad because it was a great family dinner we all liked  loved and ever since my mum, brother and I moved to the other side of town, I’ve been missing this baby! I asked my step dad to write me down the recipe and VOILA… I got to make the tuna pasta bake. MMMMM….

For the tomato sauce, you’ll need:                           For the cheese sauce, you’ll need:
-400g pasta tubes (I used quite big ones!)                     -15g butter
-half a broccoli head                                                                -80g cheese
-1 onion                                                                                          -1 dessertspoon flour
-1 red or orange pepper (I did half/half)                        -1/2 pint of milk (roughly)
-mushrooms (as many as you wish)                                 + cheese for the crispy topping!
-1 courgette                                                                                  
-1 tin chopped tomatoes
-1 dessert spoon tomato paste
-2 tins tuna in brine
-1 or 2 cloves of garlic
1. Preheat your oven to 280 degrees
2. Blanch your broccoli heads for 7-8 minutes and boil your pasta for about 10 minutes (or less for smaller pasta- it’s going in the over later)
3. Dice your onion and chop the rest of your vegetables into small bits. We had fairly chunky veg. but it really softens so it worked, but you can adjust this to your preference (but don’t forget to adjust veg. cooking times too!)
4. Measure out the ingredients for your cheese sauce, as this needs to be done with constant stirring
cook5. Soften your onions
6. Add in the pepper and mushrooms- you don’t want to overdo the veg here, so a fairly low heat is good- for about 7 minutes
7. Add the courgette and broccoli heads for about 2 minutes.
8. Stir in the tin of chopped tomatoes and the tomato paste. Heat through and stir.
9. Add the tuna. Don’t stir too much or it will break down into nothing! Gently fold it in to the mixture.
10. Leave the frying pan to cool here and move on to make the cheese sauce.
CHEESE SAUCE- use low heat and constantly stir!
1. Melt the butter in a small pan until sizzling
2. Add the flour and mix (I used a whisk lightly to avoid lumps) until you have a thickish consistency
3. Gradually add the milk and keep mixing
4. Add the cheese and stir until it is melted into the milk-flour-butter mixture. Season with pepper or Dijon mustard if you want!
5. Cook on a low heat for about 10 minutes.
(This was my first time making cheese sauce and I really wasn’t sure if it was the right consistency etc. till it was done and I taste tested it!!! Just stick with it and go with your instinct on whether it needs more/less of anything)
11. Drain the pasta and put in a large pyrex dish then add the tomato-vegetable-tuna sauce and gently mix together
12. Pour the cheese sauce over and then using a fork, make small gaps between the pasta for it to fall through a bit
13. Grate cheese on top, cook for 30-40 minute and enjoy!


Kath xxxx


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