Tag Archives: easy pasta recipes

Warm Summer Pasta with tomatoes, olives and salami

I am a late ‘wine bloomer’ being introduced to it in the right way only in my late 20s. Till then, my only experience of wine was the occasional glass of homemade ones my mum used to prepare annually in time for Christmas.

But living in India, it was not easy to experience wines on a frequent basis. Good wines are hard to come by and cost through the roof so wine-drinking was a very occasional affair exclusively reserved for special occasions. But thanks to friends living abroad, a good bottle of wine often made its way to our table which we would guardedly use making sure that we paired it with the right kind of meal and ambience.

Aussies are big on wine (but then they are big on beer, cider…basically big drinkers anyway!) and this is the best place to experience wine from across the globe, without having to burn a hole in our pockets.

With both of us having a real interest in wines, we began to experiment and learn more about it, in our own small way. We are no wine connoisseurs, but we are definitely beginning to understand and appreciate our bottles better.

One of the better known Australian wine brands is the De Bortoli Wines. And when I received a discount voucher, it was the best time to put these wines to the test.

We got two bottles, a Chardonnay and a Shiraz. The wines arrived carefully packaged along with a copy of the 2015 De Bortoli food and wine calendar. The calendar got my attention immediately with a bunch of amazing recipes paired perfectly with a De Bortoli wine. It is a beautiful calendar with amazing rustic food photography, notes on the De Bortoli family, information about wines and recipes. A well-thought of and put together calendar…..


Today’s warm summer pasta recipe comes from this calendar and we paired it with the 2012 Windy Park Chardonnay from Yarra Valley.

This is a simple and classic Italian recipe; just perfect for the warm, humid summers of Melbourne. Not one of those sauce laden, heavy dishes, this warm summer pasta incorporates fresh tomatoes, olives, garlic, herbs, sun dried tomatoes and spicy salami.

It’s quick and easy to prepare; slightly cook the ingredients with some good quality olive oil and toss the tagliatelle through it. Ready in minutes and a boon for days when you don’t want to slave away in the kitchen heat, especially during this festive season.

I really cannot describe wines in the flowery wine language but I can say so much – this one was medium-bodied with fruity, floral notes. And it paired beautifully with this warm summer pasta.



So, with wine or not, this warm summer pasta is a great family dish and so simple, that you must try it for sure;

Original recipe by Leanne De Bortoli



1. 500 gm tagliatelle (or any ribbon-type pasta)
2. 5 ripe, red tomatoes; peeled and chopped
3. 8 sun-dried tomatoes, sliced
4. 60gm black olives, pitted
5. 10 slices spicy salami, cut into strips
6. 2 tbsp olive oil
7. 3 garlic cloves, crushed
8. 2 tbsp fresh sage, chopped
9. 3 tbsp fresh basil, shredded
10. 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
11. Parmesan cheese, grated
12. Salt, to season
13. Freshly milled black pepper, to season


(Slightly altered from original)

1. Cook the pasta in salted boiling water till al dente or according to packet instructions. Drain and keep aside, reserving ½ cup of the water.
2. In a deep pan, heat olive oil and sauté the salami strips for a minute or two.
3. Add the fresh tomatoes and garlic and sauté on high for one more minute or till the tomatoes are slightly mushy.
4. Add the sun dried tomatoes, sage, olives and balsamic vinegar; mix well and immediately add the drained pasta.
5. Season with salt, black pepper.
6. If the dish feels a bit dry, add a few spoons of the reserved water to loosen it up.
7. Remove from heat and add the basil and Parmesan; toss well to combine.
8. Serve hot with grated Parmesan cheese.
9. Enjoy with a glass of wine and your loved ones!



Disclaimer – This is not a sponsored post; I received a discount voucher for De Bortoli wines at a blogging conference but paid the rest from my own pocket. All the opinions expressed are mine.


Penne with Tuna (in Chilli Oil)

The excessive use of technology in today’s world especially in our children’s lives….there has been much debate about this topic already. Apart from the scientific research studies, our everyday life and relationships stand testimony to the destructive nature of excessive technology use. Still most of us refuse to accept it or do anything about it.

I have entered into much debate, sometimes heated ones, with other parents regarding this, desperately trying to get the point across that you need to spend more time with your children than thrust a gadget into their hands so that we are not disturbed at the end of a tiring day’s work.

Believe me, I have nothing against technology; my whole career depends on it. In its own space, it is extremely useful and I cannot think of a life without it. My child knows enough about gadgets and technology to fit into this society in spite of not being a ‘glued to the iphone/ipad’ child.

Recently, I came across an article by Renee Robinson which captured the essence of what I have wanted to say to each parent. Renee has written it beautifully in the form of a letter to her sons on why she says ‘no to electronics’. Do take a moment to read this article as no one could have said it better than her.

Today’s recipe is a pasta dish – one that my boy loves to eat. It’s an easy, one-pot meal packed with delicious flavour and perfect for weekday dinners. Today’s working parents struggle to eat right on weekdays and this tuna fusilli helps you dish out a great meal within minutes leaving you less stressed out with more time to spend with your loved ones.

Adapted from a Curtis Stone recipe, this pasta dish is all about the tuna. The rich, meaty flavour of tuna goes well with pasta, throw in some veggies and you have a balanced dish on hand. I have used the Sirena tuna (in chilli oil) but you can use just about any good quality, sustainable canned tuna brand or even fresh tuna if you have some on hand. Using the flavoured chilli oil tuna means an extra dash of flavour and Sirena has lots of interesting flavour combinations to choose from.

Try and get your hand on fresh thyme if possible instead of the dried ones; the flavour is lighter and more refreshing. So, here’s the way to prepare  this delicious pasta dish with crushed tomatoes, green beans and flavoured with fresh thyme and chilli flakes. The perfect one-pot comfort meal!

Penne with Tuna (in Chilli Oil) -


  1. 200 gm fresh green beans, trimmed, cut crossways into 5cm-long pieces
  2. 500 gm dried penne
  3. ½  cup olive oil
  4. 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  5. 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  6. 2 large, ripe, red tomatoes, chopped finely
  7. 4 large sprigs of fresh thyme, leaves removed
  8. 1  tsp dried chilli flakes
  9. 2 x 150gm canned tuna (I used Italian style Sirena tuna in chilli oil (but any type would do)
  10. Salt, to season
  11. Freshly milled black pepper, to season


  1. Blanch the green beans in salted water and keep aside.
  2. Cook the pasta in boiling water according to packet directions. Drain and keep aside, reserving 1 cup water.
  3. Heat oil in a large pan and add onion and garlic, cook for 1 min or until softened. Add tomatoes, thyme and chilli flakes and cook for 3 mins, or till the tomatoes have softened and turned mushy. Season to taste with freshly ground black pepper and salt.
  4. Add the beans and canned tuna (with the chilli) to the tomato mixture. Lightly break up the tuna if necessary with the ladle and mix well to combine.
  5. Then add pasta and the reserved pasta water; toss well to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Serve hot.


If you love pasta dishes, click here for more inspiration!

%d bloggers like this: