Turkey Tetrazzini

TURKEY TETRAZZINI – 6 to 8 servings

Luisa Tetrazzini, the Italian opera star of the early 1900s, has lent her name to this dish, which is decidedly American in character.

  • 8 ounces spaghetti
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons butter or margarine (see note)
  • 8 ounces fresh mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • ½ medium green pepper, coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup flour
  • 4 cups milk or 2 cups each milk and half-and-half (see note)
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste
  • ½ cup shredded Swiss cheese
  • 2 cups cubed cooked turkey (about 3/4-inch cubes)
  • 2/3 cup chopped pimento or sweet red pepper
  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese or reduced-fat Parmesan cheese

Cook spaghetti according to package directions; drain thoroughly and set aside. Do not overcook; spaghetti should be al dente (slightly chewy).

In a medium to large heavy saucepan, melt butter over moderate heat; add mushrooms and green pepper and saute, stirring frequently, until just tender.  Do not overcook.  Stir in flour, blending well.  Gradually add milk, blending well.  Cook, stirring constantly, over moderate heat until mixture is thickened and bubbly hot.  Season with salt and white pepper to taste.  Add Swiss cheese, turkey, cooked spaghetti, pimento or sweet red pepper, mixing carefully but well.  Turn mixture into a lightly greased 2-quart casserole.  Bake, uncovered, in a preheated slow oven (325 degrees F.) for 30 minutes. Evenly sprinkle Parmesan cheese over casserole and continue baking for 5 to 10 minutes or until Parmesan cheese is golden brown. Serve immediately and garnish as desired.

Note: May reduce butter or margarine, if desired, being careful that mushrooms and green pepper do not stick to pan.  May lightly coat the saucepan with non-caloric vegetable spray, if desired.

Note: May use reduced-fat or skim milk, if desired; however, the flavor will not be as rich.

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