Lemon Tonno Pasta Salad

One of my favorite things about the transition from spring to summer as a kid was getting to eat dinner on our screened in porch. There was always something so soothing about enjoying a meal outside, surrounded by the sounds of the woods behind our house. As I've gotten older and moved to the city, I yearn to hear those soothing sounds that encapsulate summer oh, so well. 

Nostalgic for summer nights on my screened in porch, I decided to adapt one of my family's most beloved light summer dinners: Lemon Tonno Pasta Salad. This dish is made with some of my favorite Italian pantry staples (think capers, olives & tonno,) and is easy to throw together for a quick weeknight meal. In addition, this pasta dish can be enjoyed plain or added to salad greens to make a healthier, plant-packed lunch or dinner! 

Italian Market Pasta Salad

Makes 6 servings
Time: 25 minutes

1 1/2 cups of orzo (dry)
1 large clove garlic, minced
4 scallions, chopped
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, sliced in half
1 7-ounce jar of tonno (I love this brand)
3 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 heaping tablespoons basil, chopped
Optional: 2 tablespoon capers
Salt and pepper to taste

* If you can’t find tonno you can use canned tuna. Since tonno comes packaged in oil I highly recommend adding at least 2-4 more tablespoons of olive oil to the dish if using tuna packed in water. 

1. Following the direction the package cook the orzo as instructed.
2. As the orzo cooks, add all of the ingredients into a large bowl. 
3. Once the orzo is cooked, strain the pasta and add to the bowl. Mix well and add salt and pepper to taste. 

Nutritional Information (per serving)
350 calories, 13g fat, 44g carbs, 2g fiber, 1g sugar, 16g protein

Recipe adapted from Israeli Couscous and Tuna Salad