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1 For the Sauce: Lightly saute the onion in oil in a saucepan and add the remaining ingredients, except the basil and salt. 2 Stir and simmer gently for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally until the water has evaporated leaving a moist, richly flavoured sauce. 3 This can be prepared in advance and reheated when needed. Shortly before serving, stir in the basil, taste and adjust the seasoning, adding salt only if really needed. 4 Put a large pan of salted water on to the boil for the pasta. When it reaches a rolling boil, tip in the pasta, boil and cook until al dente. While the pasta is cooking, pour sunflower or olive oil, or a mixture of both, into a small pan to a depth of about 3cm/1". 5 Heat until good and hot and test by dropping a small bread cube into the oil. If it sizzles and browns within 30 seconds, the oil is hot enough. 6 Fry the basil leaves in oil three or four at a time; fish out within 20-30 seconds, while still bright green. Drain on kitchen paper and repeat with the remaining leaves. 7 To serve, drain the pasta thoroughly, tip into a large, warmed serving bowl, pour in the hot sauce and toss to mix. Top with the deep-fried basil leaves and shavings of Parmesan. Eat at once. Recipe by: Sophie Grigsons Herbs
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