I’m actively trying to meat more fish – my wife Ann-Marie prefers it to meat, and there are obvious health benefits to varying our diets. The added bonus is that many fish-based dishes are quick to make and so perfect when you’re pushed for time. Chilli Lemon Tuna and Broccoli Spaghetti from the Hairy Dieters is one of our favourites – get all the equipment and ingredients out on your working top, and it can be ready in under 20 minutes.
Tuna steaks are relatively expensive, but frozen varieties as I highlighted in Seared Sesame Tuna are more affordable. But to reduce the costs further for this particular recipe, swap the tuna steaks for tuna flakes or (better still) salmon fillets and ditch the tenderstem broccoli for just a regular head of broccoli as I did.
Recipe: Chilli Lemon Tuna and Broccoli Spaghetti
Calories: 472 calories per portion
Book: Hairy Dieters – How to Love Food and Lose Weight
Prep time: Approx 10 minutes
Cooking time: Approx 12 minutes
Ingredients: 150g tenderstem broccoli, 100g dried spaghetti, 1 tsp dried chilli flakes, ½ tsp flaked sea salt, ½ tsp coarsely ground black pepper, 2 very fresh tuna steaks (about 150g each), 1 tbsp olive oil, 100g cherry tomatoes (halved), freshly squeezed juice of 1 lemon, 1 tsp chilli oil, 3 heaped tbsp flat-leaf parsley (roughly chopped), lemon wedges for squeezing (optional)
Cost per portion: Approx £4.69
Method: Half fill a large saucepan with water and bring it to the boil. Trim the broccoli and cut each stem into 3 pieces, leaving the heads intact. Add the spaghetti to the boiling water, return to the boil and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the broccoli to the same pan and cook for 2 minutes more.
When the pasta is cooking, mix the dried chilli flakes, salt and pepper together in a small bowl. Sprinkle the mixture lightly over both sides of the tuna and set aside. Pour the oil into a large non-stick frying pan and place over a medium-high heat. You need a large frying pan because you will be tossing the drained pasta in the same pan. Fry the tuna steaks for 2-3 minutes on each side, depending on how thick they are. If you like your tuna rare, cook for 1 ½ minutes on each side.
Drain the pasta and broccoli in a colander. Put the tuna on warmed plates and add the drained spaghetti, broccoli, tomatoes, lemon juice, chilli oil and parsley to the frying pan.
Cook for 2 minutes, tossing with 2 wooden spoons until the pasta is lightly coated with the spices from the pan and the tomatoes are softened but still holding their shape. Divide the spaghetti between the plates using tongs or a couple of forks. Add some extra lemon wedges for squeezing if you like. Serve right away while it’s all lovely and hot.