A classic. True comfort food. With the addition of a protein you have a tasty, retro main course, especially if you use canned tuna; without, an excellent side dish. Besides canned tuna, try canned salmon, or cubed ham, cooked ground beef, turkey, cooked beans, etc. You can also toss in some shredded roots, such as carrots, turnips, kohlrabi, celeriac, winter squash. Dried herbs and/or spices add other flavor elements. Endless possibilities. Ketchup is really good with this…

1 1/2 c dry pasta
2 T butter or oil, plus extra for greasing baking pan
1 onion, chopped
1 – 2 garlic cloves, minced
4 c shredded cabbage, plus other shredded roots, if you like
1/4 c water
1 c milk
1 c shredded cheese
1 – 2 cans tuna or salmon; 1 1/2 c other protein, as you see fit
salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 t caraway seeds or celery seeds or dried herb(s), or a combination
1/2 c dried bread crumbs or wheat germ

1. Bring a large pot of water to the boil. Cook pasta until just shy of al dente. It will finish cooking in the oven. Drain.

2. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease an 8″ x 8″ or 11″ x 7″ baking dish, or other suitably-sized vessel.

3. Heat the butter in a lidded skillet. Add onions, along with a good pinch of salt and cook for about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minutes. Stir in the cabbage along with any other roots you may be using. Add the water, cover and cook for about 5 minutes, until the cabbage is becoming tender. If there’s a lot of liquid, uncover and allow liquid to cook off.

4. Meanwhile, in the pasta pot, heat the milk. Don’t let it boil. Add the cheese and stir to melt. Stir in the cooked pasta, combining well.  When the cabbage is done to your liking, transfer to the pasta mixture, stirring to combine. Add the tuna, salt, pepper, and caraway seeds, stirring to incorporate well.

5. Scrape into prepared baking dish. Smooth top. Sprinkle with bread crumbs. Bake for about 30 minutes, until bubbly and browned on top.