Saturday, May 15, 2010

15-Minute Tuna and Penne

I knew it was going to be one of those days when I got stuck in a heavy downpour, standing in front of my workplace, digging for my entry badge in a tote bag that could fit a six-month-old. My shoes, underwear, and breakfast sandwich were all soggy when I reached my desk. “Ten more hours until I’m in my pajamas at home,” was my only thought as the computer booted. Actually, I also thought, “Is it appropriate in an office-context to walk around barefoot as your shoes dry?” (Answer: No. But “class” is overrated, so I did anyway. Also the boss wasn’t in.)

I've been eating my way through May – I blame it on the “rut” I’m in, because things can only compound so much until you reach for the Mr. Goodbar. I used to have a bit bitter (read: envious) outlook toward my husband: his life is down-right easy. (So maybe I’m still bitter.) But now I’m also relieved one of us is stable in mind and body, because someone has to cook my dinner! The other week Matt made a simple pasta salad accented with tuna and artichokes, and last week we had a fresh salad with skirt steak, lime, mangos, and more. Today I’m wearing my girdle underwear, which would be excellent, except the old things are beginning to lose their elastic and I have to keep hiking the damn things up. Of course I do this in plain view. Like I said: life is hard.

Tuna and Penne (or bowties, or spirals, or whatever your heart fancies)
Adapted (aka made yummier and much less healthier) from Cooking Light
  • 1 (or, hell, 2) red bell peppers
  • penne pasta (8 ounces)
  • 1 bunch coarsely chopped arugula
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced shallots
  • 4 TB red wine vinegar
  • 1-2 TB capers, divided
  • 2 TB olive oil
  • 1 TB thyme
  • 1 jar marinated artichoke hearts
  • 1 (7.8) jar premium tuna packed in oil (such as Ortiz), drained and flaked*

*I am cheap. Not that cheap, but I balked at the $9.50 jar of fancy tuna. So I bought half that and used half albacore in water. Oh, the horror, I know...

Preheat broiler. Cut bell pepper in half lengthwise, discard seeds and membranes (ha, ha). Place pepper halves, skin sides up, on a foil-lined baking sheet; flatten with hand. Broil 15 minutes or until blackened. Place in a ziplock bag and seal. Let it stand 15 minutes. Then peel and chop.
Bring water to boil and cook pasta accordingly with some salt. Drain and rinse with cold water.

Now combine the bell peppers, pasta, a dash salt, and the remainder of the ingredients in a large bowl and toss well. Wasn't that easy?!

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