4 of the top 10 things that guys, even more so heterosexual, don’t do naturally of their own free will are: 1) their nails; 2) shopping; 3) ironing… and; 4) dirty dishes, the later only if there isn’t any more space left in or around the kitchen sink. You know, those leaning tower constructs of stained, somewhat brownish plates, glasses and silverware that seem to defy gravity as they glisten under the lighting, testaments to the open-and-heat meals of days gone by?
I’ve been domesticated hence I do all the above mentioned stuff, the dishes sometimes even as I cook – under internal duress, admittedly, but I do them.
Still, I’m reticent about them so when I have the chance to limit cleanup, I do. There are several ways to do so. The most pleasurable is takeout – sushi, pizza and the like. But the former can get rather dear and the later tiring, say, if you’ve done it for 6 straight days. By the 5th evening the guys at your usual pizzeria have become so used to your 7:55pm arrival that they have your order ready even if you didn’t call it in beforehand. At that point it’s time for option 2: a one pan meal.
Once again, there are a bizillion ways to make one. One rather yummy option, fast to boot, is this:
Big Flavors, Small Price: Butterfly Pasta with Tuna and Broccoli
- 1 can or tin tuna ventresca (or tuna filet) in olive oil drain it. don't be guy about it.
- 180 grams butterfly noodles hard wheat or integral
- 2 cloves garlic red or pink preferred
- 3 tbsp ev olive oil center-north italy, all italian made. If they don't put the region the olives themselves were harvested but leave it generic, like 'made in the EU', screw it: buy the real stuff. Its worth it.
- 1 untreated lemon rind, grated
- 2 palmfuls broccoli …when you buy: it should be firm and lush-green
- 10 date or cherry tomatoes, from Sicily if possible or local tomatoes in season if not.
- salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- 1 small palmful flat leaf parsely of sweet basil leaves optional
- 1 tint pinch hot pepper optional
- Put the usual salted water on to boil, (the water you cook pasta in should sort of be as salty as the Mediterranean sea,) and once boilng, slide in the pasta – short noodles for this recipe, large bow tie or butterfly shaped, though any will do. 80-120 grams per person, depending on how hungry you are. (Even 150. 250 if you ride 10 hours a week. But 80 are enough.) Add a minute to the suggested cooking time, seeing as the addition of broccoli about mid-way through will lengthen the time necessary. You can use spaghetti if you want but if you do it would be better to sauté and mix in a pan before plating, which would mean extra cleanup. So.
- Clean some broccoli, about one full handful per person, and divide it into small bite-sized pieces. If you want to use the stem part of the vegetable as well as the leafy part peal and slice the stem immediately and place it into the boiling water. Now, grab the main serving bowl. Take one garlic clove and squish it along the inside. Your hands will taste rather lovely like garlic for a day after if you scrunch the clove hard, but hey, you're a guy. What's a little garlic? If you want the end result to have even more of that fresh garlic flavor, rub the individual serving bowls as well. Check on the pasta to see it isn't boiling over or sticking. Now, slice some datterini (or cherry, if you can't find them) tomatoes from Sicily in half, about one palmful per person, and slide into the main serving bowl. Check the timer. If the noodles have about 5 minutes or so to cook (it depends on the size of the broccoli pieces you prepared,) slide them into the boiling water as well. Now for the main ingredient of the condiment.
- Open one box of quality tuna ventresca filets in olive oil per two people. Remember, drain out the oil. Don't be a guy about it. The old oil will detract from the taste. Anyway, place the filets into the serving bowl and break them up a little with a fork. Now add a tablespoon per person of fresh, good extra-virgin olive oil. Then add a pinch of salt, a bit of fresh ground black pepper. Now check on the pasta for salt and tenderness. Add salt and adjust the cooking time as needed. Finally shred in a few basil leaves.
- When the pasta is ready, drain well and toss the noodles straight into the main bowl. Mix, plate, and dribble but a few more drops of oil on top. You can add a dash of hot pepper optionally. And serve with a glass of medium structured, chilled white wine. It's a light dish, which is a good thing. After dinner don't forget you have the leaning tower of clothes to iron….. PS: In alternative, you can can the broccoli and add 1/4 a grated lemon rind per person instead, which is just as delicious, maybe more, and will leave even less to clean….
PS: In alternative, you can ditch the broccoli and add 1/4 a grated lemon rind per person instead, which is just as delicious, maybe more, and will leave even less to clean….
link: endangered tuna: http://www.ourendangeredworld.com/species/sharks-fish/bluefin-tuna/