Spaghetti alla San Giovannello
Spaghetti with Tuna and capers
(Spaghetti with tuna alla San Giovannello) Serves 6
A tasty and quick traditional dish from Puglia. It was designed to celebrate San Giovanni (on June 24th) but is one that our family regularly make throughout the year and especially on Christmas eve as part of the ‘cena della Vigilia’ the fish feast still observed in southern Italy and Sicily but varies from area to area. It requires only a few ingredients and as these products are usually easily available in every southern Italian kitchen – it is a great ‘go to’ recipe.
This has of course been adapted from the original recipe. Our uncle Franco loves to add a sprinkle of chilli flakes – feel free to revert to the original recipe with anchovies and black olives.
12 cherry tomatoes cut in half
500g tinned tuna in oil
2 teaspoons capers
1 600g jar passata
4 whole cloves of garlic
Terre Di San Vito’s extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
Preparing the sauce:
In large a frying pan, fry the whole cloves of garlic until lightly golden (do not let them burn or they will be bitter)
Add the fresh cherry tomatoes and capers and cook for about 5 min
Add the jar of passata and a pinch of pepper (do not add salt at this time as the capers are salty)
Add a little water to the jar of passata – swirl it around and add it to the sauce
Let the sauce cook on a low light for 50min to 1 hour, stirring occasionally
Add the tinned tuna
At this point, add a pinch of salt and pepper and taste it!
Let this simmer for 20min while you cook the spaghetti
Preparing the spaghetti:
In a large saucepan, add approx. 2 litres of water, large pinch of salt and bring to the boil
Add the spaghetti and cook as directed on the packet (do not overcook the spaghetti – better under than over. Ideally you want it ‘al dente’ to the bite as it will continue to cook in the sauce!)
Once the spaghetti is cooked, drain it well and add it to the pan with the sauce
Give it all a good mix and let it sauté in the pan for a couple of minutes with the other ingredients so the flavours can combine
Feel free to remove the large cloves of garlic before serving!
Take it to the table and serve!
We wish you a buon Natale e buon appetito!
It is advisable to consume the spaghetti freshly prepared. However, the sauce can be prepared in advance and kept in the fridge in an airtight container for a day.
The original recipe is as above but instead of tuna it contains olives and anchovies – feel free to give it a try!
If you want to make spaghetti alla San Giovannello even more crunchy, you can add fried breadcrumbs – sprinkled over the top.
Feel free to try your favourite pasta instead of spaghetti.
Always serve this with a bottle of our fabulous Terre Di San Vito Il Vescovo award winning red wine