Brandon Sun (Newspaper) - June 30, 2002, Brandon, Manitoba
It’s a welcome title to see on a bright cover: Quick From Scratch Pasta Cookbook.
The payoff for cooks in a hurry is that the book, from Food and Wine magazine (American Express, distributed by Sterling) offers plenty of smart ideas to try.
The large format allows clear, generous layouts. A wide selection of recipes, each shown in a full-page colour photo, suggests solutions to most meal quandaries.
There are also loads of cooking tips, possible substitutions, shortcuts, lists and other ideas to help you get organized. You’ll also find recommendations for wines that might enhance your meal.
In the following streamlined recipe for fedelini with tuna, fennel and orange zest complement one another as well as the pantry staples called for — canned tuna, chickpeas and tomatoes. If you don’t happen to have fedelini on hand, spaghetti or vermicelli would be fine, the editors say.
FEDELINI WITH TUNA AND CHICKPEAS
30 ml (2 tbsp) cooking oil I small onion, cut into thin slices 3 ml ( 3/4 tsp) fennel seeds Grated zest from 1/2 orange 7 ml (I 1/2 tsp) salt
I ml (1/4 tsp) freshly ground black pepper
250 ml (I cup) canned crushed tomatoes
165 g (6 oz) can tuna packed in oil
410 ml (I 2/3 cups) canned drained chickpeas, rinsed
350 g ( 3/4 lb) fedelini
60 ml (1/4 cup) chopped fresh parsley
In a large frying pan, heat oil over moderately low heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add fennel seeds, orange zest, and salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, for I minute longer. Add tomatoes and simmer, covered, for IO minutes. Add tuna and its oil and chickpeas, cover, and remove pan from heat.
In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the fedelini until just done, about 6 minutes. Reserve about 125 ml ( 1/2 cup) pasta water. Drain pasta and toss with sauce, 60 ml ( 1/4 cup) of the pasta water, and parsley. If the sauce seems too thick, add more of the pasta water.
Makes 4 servings.
Cook’s note: Different brands of tuna vary tremendously. Here we use tuna packed in oil, and we count on that oil as part of the sauce. If your tuna has less than 22.5 ml (I 1/2 tbsp) oil per can, add a little extra cooking oil to make up for the difference.
450 g (I lb) ripe tomatoes
1 seedless cucumber
50 ml ( I /4 cup) red onions, diced 150 ml (2/3 cup) bottled Greek dressing salt and pepper to taste
2 184 g cans solid albacore tuna
125 ml ( 1/2 cup) feta cheese, crumbled 250 ml (I cup) black Greek olives (kalamata)
15 ml (I tbsp) capers, optional I ll lemon, cut into wedges
Cut tomatoes into 2.5 cm (I-inch) chunks. Cut cucumbers into similar size pieces. Toss tomatoes, cucumbers and onion with enough dressing to coat lightly. Adjust seasonings if necessary.
Break tuna into chunks. Sprinkle feta and tuna over salad. Top with olives and capers, if using. Garnish with a lemon wedge.
Makes 4 to 6 servings.
Source: Ocean’s Fisheries.
A Fedelini with tuna and chickpeas
Versatile tuna comes to suppertime rescue
Having cans of fish like tuna, clams or salmon on the kitchen shelf is a wise move — especially on those nights when nothing else is planned for dinner.
TUNA MUSHROOM PENNE
45 mL (3 tbsp) butter or margarine IO mL (2 tsp) garlic, chopped 160 mL (2/3 cup) onions, chopped 160 mL (2/3 cup) red pepper, diced 375 mL (11/2 cups) mushrooms, sliced 250 mL (I cup) diced tomato 375 mL (11/2 cups) fresh or jar tomato sauce
salt and pepper to taste I 170 or 184 g can of chunk light tuna 125 mL ( 1/2 cup) basil and oregano, chopped
180 mL (3/4 cup) Parmesan cheese, grated 450 g (I lb) penne pasta
Melt butter over medium heat in a heavy saucepan. Saute garlic, onions and peppers for 3 minutes until softened. Add fresh mushrooms and stir.
Increase heat to high and cook, stirring for 3 to 4 minutes. Add diced tomatoes and sauce. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer gently for 20 minutes. Adjust seasonings if necessary.
Fold in tuna, herbs and I /4 of the cheese.
While sauce simmers, cook pasta according to package directions.
Toss sauce with drained pasta and sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Different mushrooms give an extra flair, try browns or portobellos
Try this dish using canned Sockeye salmon or baby clams.
Source: Ocean’s Fisheries.
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