Sunday, June 3, 2012

Penne with Tuna, Lemon, Capers, and Olives

This pasta dish has what I consider a perfect balance of flavors! I always stock penné as a staple, usually have white or light canned tuna, and generally have capers and olives in my “special” pantry, so when we need something quick and tasty, I turn to this excellent recipe. Ron and I made it on Saturday night. I hope it’s as good for you as it is was for us. No nudge-nudge, wink-wink intended. 
Penne with Tuna, Lemon, Capers, and Olives:
3 c. dry penne
2 tbsp. butter or margarine
2 tbsp. olive oil
4 large garlic cloves, chopped fine
1-½ tsp. finely grated lemon zest
¼ c. lemon juice
3 large green onions, chopped fine
2 tbsp. drained capers
10 kalamata olives, pitted and chopped (see Note)
Two 6 oz. (184 g) cans chunk white tuna, drained
Salt and coarsely ground pepper, to taste
¼ c. finely chopped fresh parsley
Grated Parmesan (preferably fresh), as required
Cook penne in heavy pot in large amount of boiling, salted water 10-to-14 min. or until tender. Meanwhile, heat butter and oil together in small, heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and sauté 2 min. Add lemon zest, lemon juice, green onions, capers, and olives, cooking 2 min.
Reduce heat to low. Add tuna, heating through and stirring gently to keep tuna intact as much as possible. Season to taste. Drain, but do not rinse penne. Return to pot. Toss hot penne with tuna mixture and parsley. Serve and sprinkle liberally with grated Parmesan. Serves 4.

Note: If you have extra kalamata olives, try the outstanding recipe for Kalamata Olive Aioli Dip posted on my blog April 16, 2011, courtesy of the Arizona Biltmore Hotel. 

These are some of the ingredients you'll need:
I like to chop and prepare everything in advance
I often use my restaurant-style grater to prepare Parmesan cheese

Chop green onions finely

Chop garlic finely, too

I use my fine-blade grater to scrape off lemon zest 

Add lemon juice to softened garlic cloves in skillet

Add lemon zest ...

A little green onion ...

Kalamata olives and capers ...

Combine gently and cook 2 min.

Stir in drained tuna

Add tuna-caper mixture to drained penne

Sprinkle in parsley

Generously sprinkle with Parmesan before serving

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