Serious Eats: Recipes

Dinner Tonight: Pasta with Tuna, Arugula, and Chili

For a dish dangerously close to tuna casserole, this recipe came out pretty posh. Not that I have anything against tuna casserole—I remember it fondly from childhood—but it turns out the basic combination of canned tuna and noodles can be elevated without much effort, and a lot less time. The essential idea is to fight against the potential for blandness by bringing something exciting to the palate. In this case, spicy red pepper flakes, the sharpness of arugula, and a squeeze of lemon do the trick.

I've written about tuna with pasta before, with a somewhat similar recipe from Saveur magazine. This recipe uses the same technique of pasta water to achieve a creamy texture. But the addition of spicy arugula here, suggested by an old online article I found in the San Franscisco Chronicle, proved to be a development worth writing about. I took a cue from a number of comments on the last tuna pasta post to add a squeeze of lemon juice, a nice touch of brightness that tied the whole thing together.

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