"The best times you are going to have in life are at the dinner table and in bed." Old Italian saying. So relax, and enjoy the simple things!


Tuna Escabeche Pasta #French Fridays with Dorie

Tuna Escabeche Pasta- simplelivingeating.com

Sardines don't make me think of Spain. They make me think of Portugal. On any side street in Portugal you can catch a person grilling a few sardines and having a simple supper with them and a bottle of red wine.

It was only in Portugal that I ever had large sardines grilled. These are the only sardines I've ever liked, and since I could not find large sardines I decided to use something simple and fishy to make this dish: tuna. 

Tuna Escabeche Pasta- simplelivingeating.com

The original dish is an escabeche which is a way of preserving or just marinating fish in a vinegar, olive oil seasoned mixture. 

Tuna Escabeche Pasta- simplelivingeating.com

Since I am going cheap on this dish by using canned tuna instead of fresh tuna; I decided not to marinated the fish because there is no need to since it is already marinated in the can. Instead I decided to use the ingredients from the original recipe to make a pasta sauce.

Tuna Escabeche Pasta- simplelivingeating.com

The result was a spicy Mediterranean meal. The carrots really helped to off set the heat of the red pepper flakes, and the sun-dried tomatoes added depth to the dish. This is a terrific meal for the summer because it can be served hot or cold, and would hold up well sitting out at a picnic. 

Tuna Escabeche Pasta

by Diane Balch inspired by Dorie Greenspan's "Sardine Escabeche" from "Around my French Table."
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Keywords: entree tuna pasta Spanish

Ingredients (4 to 6 servings)
  • 3/4 cups of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 2 carrots chopped
  • 1 celery stalk chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoons of dried rosemary
  • 1/2 teaspoon of dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground coriander seeds
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 cloves chopped garlic
  • 1 tablespoon of tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup of red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon of sugar
  • 1 7.5 ounce jar of sun-dried tomatoes with oil, chopped.
  • 2 4 ounce cans of drained tuna any kind
  • 1 pound of pasta of your choice


1) Bring a large sauce pan 1/4 filled with very salty water to a boil for the pasta.
2) In a large skillet heat the oil on medium high and sauté the onions, carrots and celery (salt them)
3) Add the thyme, coriander, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Then add the garlic and lower the heat. Stir and cook for a minute.
4) Add the the tomato pasta stir and cook for a minute.
5) Turn the heat up to high and add the vinegar and sugar stir for a minute and turn off the heat.
6) Add the sundried tomatoes and tuna. Bring the sauce to a boil, stirring continually for a minute then turn off the heat.
7) If you have time let the sauce sit for a while. Check the salt and pepper.
8) Add the cooked pasta when you are ready to serve. It is best to mix and let the pasta and sauce blend for about 5 minutes or more before serving. Drizzle some quality extra-virgin olive oil over the pasta if it needs a little more oil.

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Note: As a member of French Friday's with Dorie I am not allowed to print the recipe. I invite you to take a look at this wonderful cookbook "Around My French Table" if you are interested in this or any other recipe I review. 


  1. Looks like you were inspired and ended up making a lovely pantry style meal for your family. I call that a success!

    1. Thanks Trevor,
      It was pretty tasty and I would not have thought of this meal without the inspiration of the original recipe.

  2. Diane, that's a fantastic idea. Every Christmas Eve, for the Feast, I make my version of barbecue shrimp. (I keep trying to
    take it off the menu but everyone complains) Anyway, all the shrimp is marinated in oil, plus other delicious goodies, and the
    leftover cooked marinated oil is saved for another meal. I like to use it on pasta which is absolutely wonderful. I loved this recipe
    although I didn't find sardines, but the shrimp was wonderful.

    1. I can understand why they won't let you take your shrimp off of the menu, it sounds good. Yes, definitely make a pasta dish with it's leftovers.

  3. Great interpretation of Dorie’s escabeche! And I would much rather eat yours! I plan on making the shrimp version this week…I think both Bill and I will enjoy it! Happy Friday, Diane!

  4. This is a great adaptation of the key ingredients - looks delish!

  5. Nice twist on the pickled fish, Diane, even if you didn't make it in the slow cooker! Have a great weekend!

  6. What a lovely idea, Diane, and I can envision it being absolutely perfect over pasta!

  7. I am liking the idea of making this and serving it cold. Right now I am thinking about some different kind of lunches to pack when I'm hiking (working) this summer. I can always keep something cold by packing it next to my water bag in my Camelback. This would cover all the bases, protein, spicy and filling. Thank you for the idea. Unlike my administrative partner-in-crime, Betsy, I am not going to mention that I was sorta hoping you'd somehow figure out how to have those little sardines swimming upstream in the slow cooker. (Disappointed when I saw there was not a sardine in sight in your Post this week.)

    1. You probably could cook this in crockpot and slowly simmer fresh sardines, but even if I wanted fresh ones I didn't have a place to get them from.

  8. From a few of the posts I have read, it sounds like I should try my first sardines in Europe some where. I laughed when I saw your comment on this post "something my family would eat". Love it! Looks like a great pasta dish.

    1. It is really true. The sardines in the Mediterranean are really good. We only get those tinned and I'm not a fan of canned sardines.

  9. Love the look of your dish... Using tuna was a great idea. I love sardines but have a hard time getting them fresh, so I think tuna would make a great sub in this recipe.

  10. This is a lovely, flavourful pasta dish, Diane! It sounds really summery and tasty. Thank you for sharing with us at the Hearth and Soul hop. Pinned and will tweet :-)

  11. Looks wonderful! Thank you so much for linking up at Tasty Tuesday! Your recipe has been pinned to the Tasty Tuesday Pinterest board! Please join us again this week!

  12. Hi Diane,
    Your Tuna Escabeche Pasta looks amazing! Hope you are having a great week and thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen


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