I bought myself two cookbooks last week. One is the original Barefoot Contessa Cookbook, because I can’t live any longer without my own copy. And the other is Williams-Sonoma Pasta. This is a bloody great book. I always see it in my local Homegoods, I always stop and browse through it and take mental notes. Finally I decided it was getting ridiculous, I should have it for my own.
So what to make first?! I hate that with a new cookbook I end up in a funk of indecision. But after taking it to bed a few times (shut up) tonight I took their recipe for Linguine with Italian Tuna and Cherry Tomatoes and tweaked it a little to suit what I had on hand. I’ve never cooked with the Italian tuna in olive oil, but I make tuna cakes all the time so I wasn’t worried it would be rejected. I had no linguini so I used cavatappi. I had cherry tomatoes and I also had some cauliflower that needed to be used. The recipe called for sun-dried tomatoes and capers, which I did not have, nor did I have spring onions. But the garden is full of chives so I cut off a bunch and substituted, and at the end I threw in some diced mozzarella.
And it came out AWESOME. The flavor from the tuna wasn’t too strong, it just gave a really subtle, background savoriness. I really like the combination of pasta and cauliflower, but I wasn’t generous enough with the cherry tomatoes, next time I will use the whole two pints.
Pasta with Italian Tuna and Vegetables
- 2 pints cherry tomatoes (I used 1 pint mixed red and orange)
- 1 head cauliflower cut into small florets (my addition)
- 8 green spring onions, including green parts, thinly sliced (I used a small handful of chives and snipped them with scissors)
- 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup olive oil plus more for drizzling
- 1 lb linguine (I used cavatappi)
- About 6 oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and thinly sliced (I didn’t have)
- 2 6-oz cans Italian tuna in olive oil, drained and flaked
- 1/4 cup capers (I didn’t have)
- Large handful of Italian parsley leaves, coarsely chopped
- About a dozenciligene -small mozzarella cheese balls – halved
Preheat oven to 450. Start water for pasta boiling.
Toss cauliflower florets in a large bowl with 1/2 the olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread on baking sheet
In same large bowl, toss cherry tomatoes, onions (or chives), and garlic with the rest of the olive oil, salt and pepper.
Roast cauliflower for 10 minutes, then add tomatoes to the baking sheet and roast another 10 minutes. I miraculously timed this so that the tomatoes went into the oven at the same time the pasta went into the water. Thank you. Thank you, I try my best.
In a large bowl, put the tuna, parsley, capers, sun-dried tomatoes, and diced cheese.
Drain the pasta and add to bowl.
Tip veggies off tray into bowl. Toss all well. Drizzle with olive oil and serve.