To Pasta (1: Butter and Onions)

This post initially said Happy February, but now it’s March and I may as well be publishing it in April…where did the first quarter of the year go?! This is a quick dish my dad used to make at home.  It is still one of my favorite things to eat:

“Pasta with Butter and Onions”

Since I didn’t really know how this was made, that’s the name my younger self assigned it when I wanted it.  Truthfully, it isn’t much more.  The only variation that has added anything to this (e.g. I added some snap peas and a little jalapeno that we had in the fridge to the photographed version just to use them up,  not because they necessarily made it better) is the addition of a few red pepper flakes for a little heat.  Though this may have been in my dad’s original dish and simply left out for the sake of his picky-eating kids.


1/2 lb thin spaghetti

1 large yellow onion, diced (red onion is also nice)

1 clove garlic, minced

Olive oil


Parmesan Cheese

Small pinch red pepper flakes

Salt, Pepper

1 can tuna (in water), prepared with mayonnaise*

Coat a pan with plenty of olive oil.  Melt a good knob of butter in it.  Add the diced onions and some salt and saute slowly until translucent and very soft (not looking for color, though a little is alright), about 10 minutes.  At 5 minutes add the garlic.  Meanwhile, cook the pasta in salted boiling water, and prepare the tuna (keep the tuna in the fridge until ready to eat).  When the pasta is cooked, strain it, reserving just a few tablespoons of the water.  Place the pasta in the saute pan with the onions and toss to coat, adding a small pinch of red pepper flakes and a bit of the water.  Grate lots of cheese in, and add some pepper.  Set on a plate, add more pepper and cheese, and put a couple forkfuls of the tuna next to it.  Eat as you wish, but I recommend a big bite of pasta, a few chews, and some tuna tossed in to finish the process.  And repeat.  And repeat.

With Butter and Onions and Stuff

* Canned tuna is not the most environmentally- or animal-friendly food product.  However, you probably have some at home, so even if you do some research and decide to stop buying it you can still enjoy this dish with those extra cans on your shelf.  The pasta is great alone, too, but something about the cold, creamy tuna makes it unreal.


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