Quick, easy, delicious, and healthy: What more could you want?
I have to warn you about something: You’ll be hooked after a single forkful of this Mediterranean Angel Hair Pasta! It’s one of tastiest pasta dishes I’ve ever had, and it epitomizes the best flavors of Mediterranean cuisine. Tomatoes, capers, olives, tuna, need we say more? They come together to form a light, easy-to-make sauce that completely envelopes every single fine strand of angel hair pasta.
You could use other kinds of pasta shapes if you like, but the thinness of the angel hair captures all the flavors that make this dish so explosive. Give or take, this dish is ready in about an hour (most of that being hands-off time to let all the flavors merge together with the heat). The pasta cooks quite quickly, so make sure to prepare the sauce in advance of the pasta! In authentic Italian kitchens, the sauce always cooks ahead of the pasta because you want the noodles to remain al dente.
Simply coat the cooked pasta with the sauce and serve it immediately. With the last coating of fresh extra virgin olive oil, you’ll find that these flavors come together perfectly!
How Much Olive Oil?
You might be looking at this recipe and thinking “A quarter cup of olive oil, are you mad?” Don’t worry; we’re not crazy, but we do know how to cook true Mediterranean cuisine! Good-quality olive oil is a staple of this diet, after all, and there are many benefits to consuming more olive oil. But, we’ll break it down to assure you that this is not an unhealthy choice.
Since this recipe makes four portions, that quarter cup is actually just one tablespoon per serving. It doesn’t sound quite as bad when you look at it that way, right? Now we know that every tablespoon of olive oil has just shy of 120 calories, and that’s still quite a few calories if you’re on a restricted diet. Take a peek at the rest of the ingredients, though; they’re all relatively low in calories. The olives, tomatoes, capers, and anchovies barely register on our calorie meter, and the tuna is a lean protein, so it’s not too bad either.
When you break it down that way, this sauce is really just flavored olive oil, so don’t be afraid to use that full quarter cup (you’ll thank us after you take your first bite!) You might become a convert to the Mediterranean diet after all!
Serving Mediterranean Angel Hair Pasta
This pasta is best enjoyed with a glass of chilled dry white wine with medium structure. It’s best when smoothened and softened with a little bit of aging in large wooden barrels (or on fine lees) in contrast with the intense tastes of sapidity and acidity. Of course, you also would want something with good persistence on the palate to go with the intensity of flavors and the aromatic flavors that are featured in this plate. Medium structured white wines like Fiano, Vermentino, Catarratto, or Trebiano can pair quite well.
Mediterranean Angel Hair Pasta
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon anchovy paste
- 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1 chili coarsely chopped
- 6 ounces canned tuna drained & lightly mashed with fork
- 1 pound canned tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons coarse sea salt
- 1/3 cup pitted olives halved
- 1/4 cup capers rinsed and drained
- 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground pepper
- 1 pound dry angel hair pasta
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley finely chopped
- Over medium heat, in a medium to large saucepan, pour and warm up half of the olive oil then add the anchovy paste, garlic, and garlic. Sauté for a couple of minutes.
- Add the tuna and sautè for 10 minutes.
- Add the tomatoes and cook for 30 minutes. Halfway through cooking, add the capers and the olives.
- Meantime, while the tomato sauce is cooking halfway through, bring a big pot of water to a boil for the pasta. When the water boils, add 2 tablespoons of coarse sea salt then cook the pasta. Angel hair pasta cooks very fast, about 3 minutes so make sure that the sauce cooks ahead of the pasta.
- Mix together the cooked pasta and the sauce then sprinkle the parsley and drizzle with the remaining olive oil.
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