I sometimes joke that my only exposure to seafood before I met my fish-ophile husband was canned tuna. Not entirely true, but the large majority of my seafood meals pre-1996 surrounded tuna from a can. My least favorite was a tuna noodle dish that my wonderful chef-y mom would make, that she topped with crushed potato chips. I have little to no doubt that the addition of potato chips were an attempt to encourage my brother and I to eat the tuna noodle dish that lurked beneath. While the potato chip trick worked for my brother, it did not for me.
Fast forward to today and perhaps in a shout out to my mom, I decided to create a new rendition of a tuna noodle dish. But this is not your mother’s tuna noodle casserole! This is a version with a bottled asian sauce (I used bottled Soy Vey) to make it super quick and easy. Instead of cooking in a hot oven, this version is fresh and summer-y. In fact, the only cooking you will need to do is boiling the noodles for the base of this dish.
Asian Tuna Noodles
½ pound whole wheat angel hair or other thin pasta
1 cup finely sliced or shredded vegetables (carrots, broccoli, bell peppers, etc)
½ cup sliced red or green onion
optional: 1 pound tofu
¼ cup Soy Vey asian dressing (we buy ours at Trader Joe’s but you can find it elsewhere)
2 - 5 ounce cans light tuna, drained
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 clove garlic, minced
¼ cup minced red onion
1-2 tablespoons sesame seeds (optional)
Toppings: minced cilantro, sunflower seeds, lime slices
Cook the pasta according to the package instructions.
Meanwhile, slice and shred the vegetables and onion. Place the vegetables in a large bowl.
Cube the tofu and place in a small bowl, toss with a bit of asian dressing, if desired.
Once the pasta is cooked, drain and pour in the bowl with the vegetables and onion (doing so will allow the residual heat from the pasta to slightly “cook” the vegetables and onion). Add the tofu (if using) and toss with the asian dressing.
In a separate bowl, combine the remaining ingredients: the tuna, rice vinegar, oil, garlic, onion and sesame seeds. Stir well.
Serve ¼ the pasta, topped with a good sized scoop of tuna on top. Sprinkle with cilantro, sunflower seeds and serve with a lime slice
A great summer dish, aka, update tuna noodle dish.
Life is sweet,
PS--If you have a vegetarian in your home, omit the tuna on top and be sure to use the tofu for an instant flexitarian dish.