Penne and Tuna Salad

If you’re looking for a really simple pasta recipe, this would be it.

Rocky gets the credit and the blame for sharing this (from Cooking Light). Credit because its really, really tasty. Blame because I’m making it way too often for my own good.

Here’s the original:

1 large red bell pepper
4 quarts water
2 1/4 teaspoons salt, divided
6 ounces uncooked penne pasta
2 cups coarsely chopped arugula
1/4 cup thinly sliced shallots
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon capers, drained
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 (7.8-ounce) jar premium tuna packed in oil, drained and flaked

1. Preheat broiler.

2. Cut bell pepper in half lengthwise; discard seeds and membranes. Place pepper halves, skin sides up, on a foil-lined baking sheet; flatten with hand. Broil 15 minutes or until blackened. Place in a zip-top plastic bag; seal. Let stand 15 minutes. Peel and chop.

3. Bring 4 quarts water and 2 teaspoons salt to a boil in a large saucepan. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting additional salt and fat. Drain and rinse with cold water; drain well.

4. Combine bell pepper, pasta, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, arugula, and remaining ingredients in a large bowl; toss well.

I simply this even further by purchasing the roasted red peppers. HT sells 3 to 4 peppers to a jar for about four dollars (often on sale for less). Doing so reduces the preparation time to nothing more than the pasta cooking time.

For the arugula I grab two handfuls from the package and for the shallot I chop up one small shallot, so forget the measurement steps.

Premium tuna? There are two options for tuna packed in oil in HT. One with garlic (no) and one without (yes). The can is 5 oz., a result of the 2008 package downsizing, but it will suffice. Skip the draining. You’ll not drain enough oil away to matter.

If you want to be quick with this, start the water for the pasta first.  Once it’s going, assemble the remaining ingredients in a large bowl. By the time the pasta is done, everything else should be set to go and you should have cleaned up everything but the pasta pot and the stainer.

Dump the pasta into the large bowl, give it a few stirs and then serve.

Realistically, the recipe delivers a serving size of two, but for me it never makes it past a serving size of one. Its that good.

~ by Genevieve on 2010.06.19.

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