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Terrific recipe from Fine Cooking. Basically everything can be found in the pantry, so easy and quick for a weeknight meal.
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 -3 large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 pinch hot red chili pepper flakes
- 3 tablespoons finely minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 2 cups canned tomatoes with juice, very finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon fennel seed (crushed in a mortar or spice grinder)
- 1 (6 -7 ounce) canimported tuna in olive oil, well drained and very finely minced
- 1⁄3 cup pitted and quartered green olives (not with pimentos)
- 3⁄4 lb dry penne pasta or 3⁄4 lb rigatoni pasta or 3⁄4 lb spaghetti or 3⁄4 lb perciatelli
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Heat 3 Tbs. of the olive oil in a 12-inch skillet over moderate heat. Add the garlic, chile flakes, and 2 Tbs. of the parsley and sauté briefly to release the fragrance of the seasonings. Add the tomatoes and fennel seed. Bring to a simmer, adjust the heat to maintain the simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is thick and well blended, about 10 minute.
- Stir in the minced tuna and then the olives. Season with salt and remove from the heat while you cook the pasta.
- Cook the pasta in rapidly boiling water. When the pasta is a few minutes away from being finished, return the tomato sauce to moderate heat and add enough of the hot pasta water -- about 2/3 cup -- to thin the sauce to a nice consistency. Keep the sauce warm over low heat.
- When the pasta is about 1 minute shy of al dente, scoop out and set aside 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water and then drain the pasta. Return the pasta to the hot pot and stir in the sauce. Cook together over moderately low heat for about 1 min., stirring and adding some of the reserved pasta water if needed to thin the sauce. Take the skillet off the heat and stir in the remaining 1 Tbs. olive oil. Serve the pasta immediately in warm bowls, garnishing each portion with a little of the remaining parsley.
i made this with whole wheat pasta, and because it's such a flavourful dish, i really couldn't tell. easy and delicious ... especially because i was able to use some of my pre-minced flat parsley loosely bagged and waiting for me in the freezer. thank you!