Lemon Fusilli with Pan-Seared Tuna

This is another great weeknight recipe for the budget conscious, and a great way to jazz up two of the more boring-seeming non-perishable ingredients in your pantry: canned tuna and pasta. It’s also great to reheat for lunch the next day.

~6 oz canned tuna*
3 tsp olive oil
1 Tbsp butter
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup whole wheat fusilli pasta
1/4 tsp dried hot red pepper flakes
1 Tbsp finely grated fresh lemon zest
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese, to taste
10 black olives, chopped (optional)
salt and pepper to taste

1. Drain tuna. Mix thoroughly with 1/2 teaspoon oil and 1/2 teaspoon garlic, then chill, covered, for 20 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, boil pasta in a large pot until cooked al dente.

3. Heat a skillet until hot, then add the butter and 1/2 teaspoon oil. Add tuna, salt, and pepper, and brown, stirring occasionally.

4. Add remaining olive oil, garlic and pepper flakes, and reduce heat to low, stirring until the garlic is golden. Remove from heat.

5. The pasta should be cooked by now; drain in a colander and return to pot. Toss with tuna and lemon zest, juice, and olives. Add salt or pepper to taste. Serve immediately topped freshly grated cheese.

Serves 1-2, depending on how hungry you are and whether you have a side salad.

*Or you could, you know, use fresh tuna from the market. But for a quick weeknight dish, this can’t be beat!

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