One day, I had spiked my tomato sauce with some horseradish (just enough to add warmth, not black-belt heat) and wanted to build a meal around that. If you don't have horseradish, use another hot sauce you have or prefer. Keep the corn, pasta and tomato sauce as the core of the dish, but feel free to play around with the choices of fish and root vegetable. Last, this is possible year round - pull your ingredients from market, pantry, fridge and/or freezer. —Nancy
4-6 as main, more as a side
dried short pasta (12 oz or about 350g odds & ends or all one kind)
Tomato sauce (home made or store bought), about 700 ml
Tuna or another canned fish in oil, about 180g
beets or another root veg (any format), about 225 ml
corn (any format), about 450 ml
horseradish or hot sauce (15 ml)
lemon juice or white wine vinegar
Salt & freshly ground pepper
olive oil, optional (15-30 ml)
In This Recipe
Start about 5-6 quarts (liters) water to boil. Add salt. When boiling, add the dry pasta and start to cook it.
Meanwhile, in an oven-proof casserole (about 4 quart or liter size), mix horseradish, tomato sauce, canned corn, beets and tuna. Include the beet liquid & tuna oil - they carry good flavors. Or add 1-2 tbsp olive oil if tuna was canned in water. If using raw corn or beets, boil them briefly, measure and add to casserole.
When the pasta is al dente (about 1-2 minutes less than package instructions), take the pot off the heat. Do not rinse or drain the pasta. Rather, using a skimmer or slotted spoon, remove the nearly-cooked pasta to the dish with tomato-fish-vegetables and toss together. Taste & season as needed with salt and pepper, lemon juice or more horseradish. Also add half to one cup pasta cooking water to sauce.
You can interrupt your prep here and store the mixed but only partially cooked dish in the refrigerator, covered, up to 3 days.
Warm briefly in a medium hot oven (375F or 190C) about 15 minutes if making the recipe straight through, or about half hour if taking it directly from the fridge.
Wine options. A light Zinfandel or Primitivo, to pick up on the tomato. Or maybe a dry Riesling to pick up on the tuna.
Extras freeze well. Thaw in fridge, or take directly from freezer to oven or microwave.