This is not an Italian dish, as the name might imply, but rather a very popular American casserole from the early 1900’s. It is a great way to present that wild spring turkey to family and friends. It is rich and creamy, and is an outstanding way to share your harvest. It is equally as good with domestic turkey or chicken if you want to go that route, but this is a recipe you must try.


  • 12 ounces curly egg noodles

  • 4 tablespoons bacon grease

  • ½ cup chopped onion

  • ½ cup chopped celery

  • Kosher salt

  • Black pepper

  • 3 cups chopped mushrooms

  • 4 cloves chopped garlic

  • 1/3 cup flour

  • 1 cup white wine

  • 4 cups chicken stock

  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme

  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 1 ½ cup grated jack cheese

  • 1 8 ounce pack cream cheese

  • 1 pound cooked turkey meat, diced into ¾ inch pieces

  • ½ cup chopped black olives

  • 1 cup bread crumbs

  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preparation Method

This recipe is perfect for one side of a turkey breast, which should yield about a pound of meat. It is also a wonderful way to use up the leftovers from a full roasted gobbler. Shred or cut the meat into ¾ to one inch pieces. As with any game-bird I highly recommend brining the meat prior to cooking. There is a lot of information about brining available on-line, and it is essential for getting the best flavor out of your game meat.

It pays to get the prep work done first, so chop the onions, celery, mushrooms, garlic, and olives and set aside. Pre-grate the cheese jack cheese and set aside (Try pepper jack as an option). Cube up the cream cheese into 1 inch chunks so that it melts better. Pre-cook the egg noodles according to the package instructions.

In a large skillet or pot, heat bacon grease over medium-high heat. Sauté onions and celery for three minutes or so until onions soften. Add mushrooms and garlic, and sauté another three minutes. Salt and pepper to taste. Dust with the flour and stir until all it is dissolved and has coated the vegetables (1-2 minutes). Add the cup of wine and scrape stir in, scraping the bits that have stuck to the pan into the sauce. Pour in the chicken stock and add the thyme and cayenne pepper. Reduce heat to medium, and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the shredded cheese and stir until melted. Repeat with the cream cheese and blend until nice and creamy. Now fold in the turkey meat, cooked noodles, and chopped olives. Stir until it is all blended, season to taste, and remove from heat.

Pour the mixture into a greased casserole dish. Mix the bread crumbs and parmesan cheese together and spread evenly over the top. Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 20-30 minutes until the sauce is bubbling and the top is golden brown. This dish, combined with a mixed salad, is really tasty. I recommend a Chardonnay to wash it down, and some good friends to compliment you on your cooking.