Sunday, January 2, 2011

Greek Pasta Salad with Tuna and Lemon Vinaigrette

Featured Ingredients: Black Olives, Quartered Artichoke Hearts, Bumble Bee Tuna.

Hi All -

Considering the last entry I gave you before the new year was a calorie-laden dessert, I thought I would start the new year off right with a guilt free, heart healthy and omega-3 rich main entree.  With not one, not two but three items from the pantry.

I love classic mediterranean flavors - lemon, oregano, olives and oil. This combination of citrus, salt and peppery herb are perfect complement to canned tuna and help elevate it's flavor better than celery and some mayonnaise.  NOTE: This tuna pasta salad is mayo free!

This is great for a quick lunch, potluck or picnic.  For an added twist and option I served this over a bed of green leaf lettuce and tossed some "home-made" croutons on top for an added garlicky crunch! 

Greek Pasta Salad with Tuna and Lemon Vinaigrette

About 1 cup Dried Penne Pasta
2 Cans Tuna
1 small can sliced black olives, drained
1 can quartered artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1/4 cup fresh dill
20 cherry or grape tomatoes quartered
1 small red bell pepper diced

Boil Pasta according to package directions until tender.  Meanwhile make Lemon Vinaigrette. Drain pasta and run under cold water to stop cooking process. Drain and put into separate bowl.  Combine pasta with vinaigrette so it doesn't dry out while making tuna salad.

Combine remainder ingredients for tuna salad into a large bowl.  Once combined fold in pasta.  Pour any remaining vinaigrette on the bottom of the bowl over the pasta salad and lightly toss.  Let salad sit in refrigerator for 30 minutes so flavors can come together.  Taste salad after the 30 minutes and finish with salt and pepper to taste.

Lemon Vinaigrette

1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 garlic clove minced
1/2 tsp sugar
1/4 cup olive oil

Combine lemon juice, oregano, garlic and sugar in a bowl. Whisk in olive oil, slowly to create an emulsion.

Added Bonus - "Home-made" Garlic Croutons

Heat oven to 375 F

Buy a loaf of freshly made garlic bread in a bag.  Not frozen. Cut up bread into a little bigger than bite size cubes.  They don't have to be perfect cubes.  Put bread into a bowl and gently fold pieces over one another to help distribute the butter mixture.  Line a baking sheet with foil.  Layout bread cubes on baking sheet in a single layer.  Place in preheated oven and bake for approximately 10-15 minutes until bread cubes and dry and are golden color.  Check bread about 1/2 way through baking and flip bread cubes. (In my case half a loaf of bread was a enough for a larger baking sheet)

Tuna Pasta Salad with Garlic Croutons

1 comment:

  1. Really good! We just enjoyed this for dinner - perfect for a hot day and the dressing was amazing!