Pasta with Tuna, Capers, and Green Olives

A few nights ago Susan and I had dinner guests. Candy and her daughter, Remy. Candy and I went to the same elementary school, junior high school and church when we were growing up in Teaneck, New Jersey (This was a long time ago.) So I feel very blessed she and her daughter took time to visit with us.

Earlier in the week, Susan and I talked about what to cook and we thought this might be perfect. I had asked Candy if there was anything she didn’t like and she said “boudin.” But the thought crossed my mind “tuna, caper, green olives!” Need I say, they loved it.

SERVES: 4

When it comes to making quick, delicious pasta sauces, Italians hold canned tuna in high regard. We complement it with Provençal herbs and orange zest. If you’re a lemon-zest fan, try that instead of the orange.

Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried sage (I used 1/2)
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary (I used 1/2)
  • 3/4 teaspoon grated orange zest (from 1/2 orange)
  • 1 tablespoon drained chopped capers
  • 1/4 cup chopped green olives
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
  • 2 6-ounce cans tuna packed in olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon wine vinegar
  • 3/4 pound linguine or tagliatelle
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Directions
  1. In a medium frying pan, heat the oil over moderately low heat. Add the garlic, sage, and rosemary and stir until the garlic just starts to brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the orange zest, capers, olives, salt, pepper, and the tuna with its oil. Remove from the heat; stir in the vinegar.
  2. In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the pasta until just done (follow package directions) Drain the pasta and toss with the tuna sauce and parsley.

NOTE

Tuna Packed in Oil

Here we use tuna packed in olive oil, and we count on that oil as part of the sauce. If your tuna doesn’t have at least one-and-a-half tablespoons of oil per can, add a little more olive oil to make up the difference. Of course, you can use tuna packed in vegetable oil, too, but avoid water-packed tuna at all costs. The flavor, and most of the nutrients for that matter, leach out into the water.

A robust French rosé from the southern Rhône appellation of Tavel will serve these Mediterranean ingredients well. Earthy and full of roasted raspberry flavor, Tavels are among the most full-bodied of rosés. If you’d rather stick to the Italian theme, look for the wonderful Sicilian rosé from Regaleali.
The first time I made this recipe I used Linguine:

~Food & Wine

Caper Stuffed Veal and Spinach Tomato Sauce

This is so delicious!!!

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup drained capers
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/3 cup dry bread crumbs
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese (My addition)
  • 1/2 teaspoon anchovy paste
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 8 veal scaloppine (about 1 1/2 pounds in all)
  • Salt
  • Fresh-ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1 1/2 cups canned crushed tomatoes in thick puree (one 15-ounce can) (Note: I used fresh assorted small tomatoes, halved)
  • 10 ounces spinach, large stems removed, leaves washed (I used 1 bag of fresh spinach.)

How to make this recipe

    1. In a small bowl, combine the capers, parsley, bread crumbs, anchovy paste, Parmesan cheese and 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Use half for stuffing and half for sauce—my idea!
  1. Put the veal on a work surface and sprinkle 1/8 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper over the meat. Put some of the stuffing near the bottom of each piece of veal. Roll the veal up loosely, enclosing the stuffing, and secure each piece with a toothpick.
  2. In a large deep frying pan, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil and the butter over moderate heat. Add the veal rolls to the pan and brown, in batches if necessary, for about 3 minutes. Remove.
  3. Reduce the heat to moderately low. Add the wine to the pan and cook, stirring to dislodge any brown bits that cling to the bottom of the pan. Stir in the tomatoes, stuffing, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Bring to a simmer. Return the veal to the pan. Cover and continue to simmer, turning the rolls once, until tender, about 25 minutes.
  4. Remove the veal from the pan. Add the spinach to the sauce and simmer until the spinach wilts and the sauce thickens, about 3 minutes. Remove the toothpicks from the veal rolls and serve the rolls with the sauce. Serve over noodles (my idea)

Based on a recipe from Food & Wine.

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