Pasta Salad with Seared Tuna and Citrus Dressing

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Pasta Salad with Seared Tuna

If you read my blog with any regularity, you know I am all about easy. I should have the word EASY tattooed on my forehead (on second thought, maybe not a good idea). So, I was browsing through Quick from Scratch One-Dish Meals Cookbook looking for something quick and from scratch. Quick, because I am a poor, tired, frazzled special ed teacher, and from scratch, because I like to pretend I am a chef. Don’t you love when you find something to try, and you actually have all the ingredients, every single one of them?? I made this pretty much as written, except that I am a very bad judge of herbs when I am cutting them. I needed 6 tablespoons of chopped mint. When I’m out cutting the sprigs, it looks like I have plenty, but by the time I pull the leaves off the stems and chop them, I end up with a fraction of what I thought I had. So, this really only had about two and a half tablespoons of mint, it could easily have handled the correct amount of mint.

Pasta Salad with Seared Tuna and Citrus Dressing
serves 4
From Food & Wine Magazines Quick From Scratch One-Dish Meals

1/2 pound spaghettini
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
fresh ground pepper
6 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cucumbers, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut crosswise into thin slices
6 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
1 pound tuna steak, about 1 inch thick

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook per directions. Drain and rinse with cold water. Drain thoroughly.

In a large non-reactive bowl, whisk together the vinegar, orange zest, orange juice, lemon juice, mustard, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Slowly whisk in 6 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the pasta, cucumbers, mint and toss together.

Heat a grill pan or a heavy frying pan over medium high heat. Coat the tuna with 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook, turning once, about 2 minutes per side for medium rare. Remove from the skillet and cut into 1 inch cubes and toss with the pasta mixture.


This was really good for how easy it was. It was very fresh and would be perfect for a light summer dinner or a lunch. It was also very good the next day for lunch. This will be my entry for this week’s Presto Pasta Nights hosted by Psychgrad at Equal Opportunity Kitchen.

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  1. says

    Are you saying the cucumbers were heated, or is this a cold dish? It’s very attractive! I forgot to order rice from the restaurant supply house 2 weeks ago, so we’re eating a lot of pasta (a LOT) this month.

    I have a cookbook titled “Too Busy to Cook?” That should tell you that you are not alone!

  2. says

    I laughed when I read your line about having second thoughts about the “easy” tattoo! I’m still smiling about that! This pasta also makes me smile. I am a big fan of asian noodle dishes, and your recipe is great! All those tasty ingredients especially the crunchy cucumber and the seared tuna!! YUM!

  3. says

    Yeah – “easy” tattooed on your forehead could lead to a whole host of problems.

    If someone served this to me, I wouldn’t thing quick and easy. So – definitely impressive. Sounds like a nice, fresh-flavoured meal.

    Thanks for the great submission to this week’s Presto Pasta Nights!

  4. says

    wait, is there something wrong with a tattoo that says “easy”? no one’s ever commented on mine, although i’m getting more old-man leers than usual and it seems like all women look at me disapprovingly. :)
    great dish. :)

  5. says

    I love pasta, pasta and bread. I am a carb loving girl. This looks like a great weeknight meal, perfect with a glass of pinot grigio.
    I am the opposite of you with herbs – I usually have way too much.

  6. Pam says

    Marjie – yes the cucumbers are not cooked. This is sort of room temperature dish. Though cold the next day, it was just as good.

    Eating – thank you, it was really light.

    Paula – I can’t decide which I like more Asian noodles or Mediterranean noodles.

    Noble – I’m starting to try to use citrus more often.

    Joy, Psychgrad, and Grace – EASY tatooed on an old lady like me probably doesn’t matter, now if I was young and hot, a different story!

    Pam – your sister would probably love this. The tuna was perfect.

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