"This is Jools'—Jamie's wife's—favorite quick Saturday afternoon pasta," Jamie says. "Every time I make it, even though it only uses a tiny fraction of my brain and takes a few minutes in the pan, she seems to be really impressed with it, so on that basis I decided to put it in this book."
"If you're going to make this, treat yourself and buy some good-quality tuna—it really makes all the difference," he says. "And if you can find any fennel tops, they're great stirred in with the tomatoes."
Servings: Serves 4
Ingredients Olive oil1 red onion , peeled and finely chopped1 to 2 fresh red chilies , deseeded and finely chopped1 level teaspoon ground cinnamon1 bunch fresh basil , leaves picked, stalks chopped2 cans (14 ounces) good-quality plum tomatoes2 cans (10 ounces) good-quality tuna in olive oil, drained and flakedSea salt and freshly ground black pepper1 pound, 2-ounce good-quality rigatoni or to 2 lemons , zest and juiceSmall handful freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Heat a splash of olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pan and cook the onion, chili, cinnamon and basil stalks on a medium to low heat for 5 minutes until onion has softened and is slightly sweet. Turn up the heat and add your tomatoes, tuna and a good pinch of salt. Break the tomatoes up using the back of a spoon, then bring to a boil and simmer for about 20 minutes. Taste for seasoning.
Meanwhile, cook the rigatoni in a pan of salted boiling water according to the pack instructions. When al dente, drain the pasta in a colander, reserving some of the cooking water.
Toss the pasta into the tuna and tomato sauce with the roughly torn basil leaves, a glug of olive oil, the lemon zest and juice and Parmesan, and mix together well. Loosen the pasta with a little of the reserved cooking water if needed. Check the seasoning and serve immediately.
Recipes taken from Cook with Jamie, published by Hyperion. Copyright © Jamie Oliver 2006. www.jamieoliver.com