Sunday, May 26, 2013

Re-visiting Recipes – Pasta with Tuna, Rosemary and Balsamic Vinegar

Recipes that we know off by heart have a habit of morphing over time. Evolution, perhaps improvement , or just plain forgetting an ingredient and substituting something else. The results may be just as good, but it’s refreshing to go back and re-discover their roots, sometimes finding that the earliest version had a clarity of flavour that has been lost in the passing of time.

This happened to me when I stumbled upon my recipe for pasta with tuna, tomato, rosemary and balsamic vinegar.

Regular readers may have noticed that I’ve been fiddling with my blog. I have been positively prehistoric and still using Blogger’s original html template. Finally the urge to play with all those clever gadgets got to me and so yesterday I summoned up all my courage and started switching it over. Several hours and much cursing and panic later I’d got something that looked as close as possible to before only with fun shiny gadgets in the sidebar, like the Popular posts feature recommended by Blog Hangout.

There was only one problem. Most of my popular posts, it seems, are from way back in 2006 and 2007 believe it or not, before I was routinely posting images with my text. So those thumbnails weren’t picking anything up. It no longer looked shiny and clever but ragged and unprofessional.  I quickly added an image to my rusk post from my files, but the balsamic vinegar pasta post still had nothing. So that’s what we had for supper last night.

Re-reading my recipe I found that I’d changed several things over all the years of this being a staple weekday recipe, and not necessarily for the better. The original kept the tuna separate from the tomato sauce, whereas I’d taken to mixing it into the sauce. There was more balsamic vinegar than I’ve been adding recently and more olive oil. I made it strictly according to my own instructions and was pleasantly surprised; the flavour was at once mellower and  more distinct, the tuna keeping its own identity and less swamped by the tomato. So now I am resolving to go back and cook some more of my staples from the original recipes, just as a reminder.

Here is the recipe from 2006 (photographed in 2013!)

Pasta with Tuna, Tomato, Rosemary and Balsamic Vinegar
For 450g/1lb pasta
8 tablespoons olive oil
3 or 4 cloves garlic
2 sprigs rosemary
450g/1lb tinned tomatoes, drained and chopped
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1 tin of tuna drained

Put the olive oil, thinly sliced garlic and rosemary sprigs in a frying pan over a medium heat. When the garlic starts sizzling add the tomatoes, with salt and pepper and cook for 10-12 minutes.
When the pasta is just cooked – really al dente – drain and put back in the pan and toss with the sauce over the heat for 1 minute. Add the tuna, stir, then off the heat stir in the balsamic vinegar and serve immediately.

Oh and all the children liked it back then and still seemed to like it pretty well now, so that's a triumph in itself!

I’m gradually getting used to my new blog look, though not completely past fiddling some more with it. I may even make an even bigger leap one of these days and migrate to Wordpress, but for now let me know what you think? Are there any other features I should add? Is it easy enough to read and easy enough on the eye?

1 comment:

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