Favorites: Tallarnee

TallarneeI haven’t made this in ages! I made it last week and it was so, so good. Just had to share.

When I google “tallarnee” I find weird stuff like foreign language references, Indian removal records, and “layer tick boxes”.  But – when I google “tallarnee recipe” google changes the spelling to “tallarni recipe” and pulls up a bunch of hits with casseroles similar to my own recipe. It’s a casserole with noodles, hamburger, corn, olives, onions, tomato soup and cheese.

I am keeping my spelling: tallarnee. I found this recipe in my recipe box behind my recipe for “Tetrazini crepes” (another miss-spell, as it turns out). Tallarnee is a great comfort food type casserole that many of us baby-boomers remember from childhood.

My recipe for Tallarnee is handwritten by me on a 3×5-inch card. That means I copied it from my mother’s collection in the late 1970s or so.TallarneeRecCard1

When I made it this week, I cut the ingredients in about half for the two of us, and we had leftovers. I used olive oil to cook the onions instead of Crisco. For the tomato soup and water, I used some really good “tomato bisque” that I found at a local store.

soup can

The above type of soup does not call for dilution with water, so I eliminated water from my old recipe for Tallarnee. If you use the undiluted kind of tomato soup, do add water.

serves 2-3

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable or olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 12 ounces ground beef
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon salt (you can probably leave this out)
  • 1 cup dry noodles (I use wide, short noodles)
  • 1/2 cup corn: fresh off the cob, canned, or frozen
  • 1/2 cup black pitted olives
  • 1/2 can condensed tomato soup mixed with 1/4 cup water OR 1 can full-strength “fancier” tomato soup (I used a little less than the full can, reserved a little for tasting)
  • 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese

Cook the onion in the oil until soft. Add the ground beef and cook until the meat is brown. Cook the noodles as the meat and onion cook.

Mix together everything except the cheese and put in a suitable sized casserole or baking dish. Top with the cheese.

Bake at 350˚ for 35-40 minutes, until all is bubbly and the cheese is melted.



I liked the chunky tomato bisque soup that I used. It gave great flavor, while keeping the comfort-food-ness of this casserole from my childhood. I think there is more to explore along these soup-lines to nudge a few more old casserole recipes into the twenty-first century.

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