Self-saucing one pot pasta
This luscious and healthy pasta dish is exceptionally easy to make. There's no need to cook the pasta separately because everything is cooked together in one pot! The recipe below is for Tuna, Zucchini and Olive Pasta, and at the bottom of the recipe we show you how to easily use this method to make six other pasta dishes.

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 onion—finely chopped
2 cloves garlic—finely chopped
2 zucchini—halved lengthways and cut into half-inch slices
½ teaspoon dried oregano
2½ cups boiling water
14 oz (420g) canned tomatoes—chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
12 black olives—pitted and chopped
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
8 oz (240g) short pasta like penne, spirals, shells or macaroni
6 oz (180g) good quality canned tuna in olive oil—drained and broken into chunks
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley

Finely grated Parmesan cheese for serving


HEAT 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large pot. COOK the onions for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. ADD the garlic and zucchini and cook for 3 minutes. ADD the water, tomatoes, tomato paste, olives, oregano, salt, pepper and pasta, and bring to a boil. COVER with a lid, reduce the heat to medium, and cook for 20 minutes, stirring once to prevent the pasta sticking. STIR in the remaining tablespoon of olive oil, tuna and parsley and serve sprinkled with Parmesan cheese.

Variations:

Chicken, Olive and Red Pepper Pasta
Replace the zucchini with strips of red bell pepper, and replace the tuna with diced skinless roast chicken.

Lentil Mushroom Bolognese
Replace the zucchini with button mushrooms (cut into quarters) and finely diced carrot and celery; replace half a cup of the water with half a cup of white wine; replace the tuna with canned brown lentils.

Antipasto Pasta
Replace the zucchini with strips of jarred roasted red pepper, sun-dried tomatoes and artichoke hearts; use fresh basil instead of parsley; and replace the tuna with canned white beans.

Pasta Primavera
Don't add the olives; use only one zucchini, and add asparagus, green beans and peas; replace half a cup of the water with half a cup of white wine; replace the tuna with 2 tablespoons of toasted pine nuts; and replace the parsley with fresh basil.

Pasta Puttanesca
Don't add the zucchini or oregano; add a teaspoon of capers and ½ teaspoon chili flakes; replace the tuna with 4 chopped anchovy fillets added at the beginning of the cooking process.

Chili Shrimp Pasta
Don't add the zucchini, olives or oregano; add ½ teaspoon chili flakes; replace the tuna with pre-cooked shrimp; stir in a tablespoon of lemon juice at the end of cooking.

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