I've had this recipe in my "need to try" folder for months now...but never got around to actually making it until now. Why now? Well, I saw that Stephen, The Obsessive Chef, had posted it a few weeks back and, well... I was reminded at how much I wanted to try it. I loved this recipe! It reminded me a ton of my mom's tuna casserole. I think it's the bread crumbs in it. And speaking of the bread crumbs... I was a bit worried at the out come of this meal because the "sauce" really wasn't a sauce until you added the pasta water. But I had nothing to fear, it turned out to be fantastic! Now, I added tuna to the recipe just to have a protein in with the pasta, as that is Chris's favorite way to eat it...with some form of meat. You can always add chicken, or just leave the protein out all together. Either way, I encourage you try this one out! I'll definitely be making it again!
Tuna Pasta Ponza
Adapted from Giada De Laurentiis
2 cups cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs
1 lb ziti or penne (I used whole grain penne)
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley
1 can tuna in olive oil, undrained
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Butter an 8x8-inch baking dish; set aside.
Place the tomatoes, olive oil, salt, and pepper in the prepared baking dish. Toss to coat. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the tomato mixture. Drizzle the top with more olive oil and bake for 20-30 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Cool for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the pasta water.
Place the pasta in a large serving bowl. Spoon the tomato mixture onto the pasta. Add the cheese and the tuna and toss well. Thin out the sauce with a little pasta water, if needed. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with parsley and enjoy!