Everybody needs a recipe that’s healthy and tasty and can be made from store cupboard staples in a pinch.
That’s exactly what Dr Preeya Alexander has done with her recipe for a ‘secret weapon’ pasta bake that’s lockdown and family friendly.
In an Instagram video Preeya, from Melbourne, Australia, detailed the recipe that’s got her through lockdown restrictions in their area and is packed with nutritious veg.
The recipe, which Preeya got from her grandmother, uses tinned tomatoes, tuna, dried pasta, and olive oil as a base. From there, you can add in whatever you fancy.
Veg-wise, the mum added mushroom, cauliflower, spinach, and chard, but she said: ‘Broccoli and zucchini [courgette] work beautifully in this if you don’t have those particular fresh veggies,.’
After that, the bake is finished off with ricotta cheese, olives, garlic, and ginger. Again, though, these can be substituted for similar items depending on your tastes and what’s in your fridge.
Preeya, who runs blog The Wholesome Doctor, says her grandma ‘swears ginger is the absolute key’ to bringing out the flavours of the dish and giving it that something extra.
She intentionally makes more than she needs because this recipe keeps well in the fridge and is easily reheatable.
Dr Preeya’s tuna pasta bake recipe
- Three tins of tomatoes
- Handful of mushrooms
- One or two cauliflowers
- Handful of greens like spinach or chard
- Crushed or ground ginger to taste
- Three cloves of garlic
- Three tins of tuna in oil
- Pasta (any shape)
- Ricotta, cheddar, or other cheese
- Boil a pan of water and cook your pasta as normal.
- In a separate pan, add some olive oil and your garlic and ginger, cooking for about a minute.
- Then, add your tuna and cook for a further minute or two.
- Add your tinned tomatoes to the mix and let simmer.
- At this point, if you’re adding cauliflower or equivalent, blitz this in the blender.
- Add all the veg once your tomatoes are slightly reduced, and some passata if using.
- Cook it all down for 20 minutes to half an hour before adding in ricotta if using and any extra spices and touches like chilli flakes or olives.
- Mix through your pasta and decant into an oven-proof dish.
- Sprinkle with cheese and bake until golden before serving.
The video Preeya shared – which has been viewed almost 8,000 times – was clearly a hit.
One person commented beneath it: ‘We made this yesterday and it was absolutely delicious and gobbled up very quickly! Thanks for the recipe! It is definitely on our to make list again!’
Another said: ‘Made this tonight for our twins who have been rather fussy of late (toddlers) and they woofed it down (as did me and the husbo!) keep the recipes coming!’
With the prospect of local lockdowns here in the UK and many people going back to the office, we all need some dinner inspiration that isn’t too difficult and can be easily substituted.
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