Friday, March 13, 2009

Dinner for Two in Lent

Because it's Lent, this time of year there are lots of recipes in the magazines and newspapers featuring fish. Keeping economy in mind, here is one of my favorite fish recipes. Tuna is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids and olive oil (a healthy oil) adds Vitamin E. Since I usually have a fresh lemon in my refrigerator, for me this is a 'pantry dinner'. It is easy and fast for a last minute meal. A salad and garlic bread complete dinner.

Tuscan Tuna Pasta

Capers are the pickled berries of a Mediterranean bush. Because they are packed in vinegar they keep a long time in the refrigerator when they are covered in the pickling liquid. To remove some excess salt, rinse them before you add them to the sauce. Together with the lemon rind they add a fresh spring flavor to this easy and economical pasta dish.

Serves 2

4 ounces rotini or penne pasta
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion (1 medium)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 can (15 ounces) diced red tomatoes
1/4 cup white wine
1 package (6.4 ounces) tuna packed in water
2 tablespoons capers, drained
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Grated Parmesan cheese

Cook the pasta according to the directions on the package. Drain and keep warm

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a 9-inch skillet over medium high heat. Add the onion and cook until the onion is tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook about 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and wine and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer 4- 6 minutes or until slightly thickened.

Stir in the tuna, capers, lemon rind, salt, pepper and pasta. Continue cooking until heated through. Serve warm with grated Parmesan cheese.

Cook’s Notes: I have recently started using whole grain pasta because of the nutritional benefits. Whole wheat pasta is more nutritious but I don’t like the flavor or texture. Either choice has more fiber than traditional pasta.

Copyright Pat Sinclair, 2009

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