Monday, February 27, 2012

Tuna, Artichoke and Tomato Pasta

This tuna, artichoke and tomato pasta is a quick and healthy dish that I adapted from Giada de Laurentiis' recipe for campanelle pasta salad. It's very fresh tasting and easy to make.

  • 4 cups of pasta
  • 1/4 cup of olive oil
  • 1/2 of a red onion, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, diced
  • 1 can of tuna, drained
  • 1 can of artichoke hearts, drained, rinsed, and quartered
  • 1/4 cup of kalamata olives, sliced
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • a handful of baby spinach leaves
  • chili flakes or Tabasco sauce (optional)
  • Parmesan cheese (optional)

This makes a pretty big batch - probably around 6 to 8 servings.

Boil your pasta of choice and drain when it's done. I used fusili, but any pasta with some nice grooves to hold the sauce will do. Add lots of salt to the water, as pasta doesn't pick up salt as well after it's cooked as it does while it's cooking. Also, if you add the salt to the water before it boils, it will boil faster. Thanks, junior high science class - I did remember something! 

Another good tip comes courtesy of Jamie Oliver: to speed up pasta cooking time, start a kettle at the beginning of the cooking process that you can add to the pot. It moves things along faster than boiling a big pot of cold water. I usually start a third of a pot on the stove and then boil two kettles of water for one pot of pasta.

In a saucepan, saute the garlic and the onions until they are softened. Add the tuna and smash it up. Add the artichoke hearts after removing any of the outer leaves that are still a bit tough, and add the olives. Allow it all to cook together for several minutes.

Add the can of diced tomatoes. Make sure to keep some of the liquid, but f you want a thicker sauce, include less of the liquid. The original recipe called for a pint of cherry tomatoes instead of a can of diced tomatoes, but I don't like the texture of tomato skins in my pasta (is that weird?) so I've tweaked that a bit. 

Just so you can make an informed decision about which way you would prefer to make it, after eating this version, my husband told me he prefers the cherry tomato version because he thinks you can taste the tuna and artichokes better that way. Also, with the cherry tomatoes, the pasta is more like a pasta e olio (pasta made with olive oil), which he really likes. I guess I'll have to alternate versions from now on, because I like it better this way.

Add the spinach leaves. Simmer for 20 minutes or until the spinach is wilted and the tomatoes have softened. Season with salt and pepper and, if you like a little kick, add chili flakes or a few sprinkles of Tabasco sauce.  Add the sauce to the drained pasta and toss it all together. Top with shredded Parmesan.

The last time I made this, I ate the leftovers cold for lunch the next day. It makes a tasty pasta salad too! If you have it cold, add a healthy spritz of lemon juice on top to add even more flavour. Yum!

I shared this on Chef in Training's Tuesday Talent Show!

1 comment:

  1. Hello and yum! I love tuna anything and this looks so good. We have very few tuna recipes and I'm always looking for more :)

    Stopping by from Talent Show Tuesday


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