Sunday, June 10, 2012

Quick and Easy Weeknight Pasta

Spring is here and that means weekend morning strolls through the farmers market.  Fresh baby greens and rhubarb are in abundance and creamy local cheeses to be tasted!

The market is where I get inspired to make something yummy, but it's often overwhelming because I just want to buy everything! I walk up and down the market two or three times asking myself how to spend my weekly market budget and waiting for something to give me a sign to help me make a decision.

Last week I met my sister at the market and when we got there, there were big dark clouds hanging over, so it was just a matter of time before the rain was going to soak the market goers.  I think I was on my 3rd lap around the market when I got my sign!  The rain started suddenly when I was walking by the Estevan Tuna Co. stand, so local canned tuna it is!

What was my plan with canned tuna?  Well, I wasn't entirely sure yet... Hmmm, maybe a tuna salad for a sandwich or turn it into a tuna melt, which I love!! I could use it to top a spinach salad, add cherry tomatoes, diced avocado and a sprinkle of lemon juice, yum!  But seeing it was cold and rainy (yes, I know, in June!), I wanted something warm and comforting.  This one is one of my favorite meals on a weeknight when I'm crunched for time but want something light and satisfying.

P.S. My other purchased items that day: rhubarb and a thyme plant for my balcony garden

Spaghetti with Tuna, Lemon and Arugula

Serves 4

1/2 lb dried spaghetti or linguini
1 can (6 oz) Estevan Tuna
1 large clove of garlic, minced
Grated zest of 1 lemon
1/4 tsp crushed chili flakes
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup fruity olive oil
2 tbsp capers, drained
4 cups fresh baby arugula
Freshly ground black pepper
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese


Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling water until al dente which means to cook it until it is tender but still firm to the bite.

Meanwhile, in a medium sauce pan, heat olive oil on low heat and add garlic.  The garlic should cook very lightly.  This step is to flavour the oil without burning the garlic.  Cook for 2 - 3 minutes, stirring frequently.  Turn up the heat to medium-low and add the lemon zest, crushed chili flakes, and the tuna, breaking it up with a spoon.  Add lemon juice and capers and give it a quick stir.

Drain pasta well and immediately add to tuna mixture, add the arugula and toss gently until arugula is just wilted.  Garnish with Parmesan cheese, a good amount of freshly ground black pepper and serve.

Cheers to lovely weeknight meals!  Let me know what your ideas are for canned tuna.

Photography by: Melissa LeBlanc

1 comment:

  1. It is also a quick and easy weekend meal. I just made it...and it's divine. The tuna is a good alternative to chicken, the lemon zest freshens it up, you get your greens, and let's face it, capers can take any pasta dish to the next level. This recipe has just been added to the repertoire of regulars. Thanks for posting sis'!