Thanis Lim

All Rounder Chef and Food Journalist

Nonya Tuna Pasta

When you have limited time, you can always choose some canned ingredients that are very useful. Since I always have pre-chopped garlic and ginger in the fridge. It's easy to just cook a quick meal. Here's how to make Nonya Tuna Pasta. It is a fusion style pasta meal that incorporates South East Asian flavours into traditional pasta. This is a lower fat and healthier version pasta which is easy to prepare yet full in flavour. A spicy tangy dish with good amount of fibre from veggies, nutritious tomatoes and you get your omega-3s from tuna.


300g any type of dried pasta, cooked in salted water (I used bowtie pasta but you can use penne pasta too)
One can diced tomatoes
One can tuna chunks in water, drained (or olive oil if you wish)
About 2 cups worth of chopped vegetables ( I used carrots, peas and ladies fingers)
1 tablespoon nonya sambal chili paste (add more if you want spicier)
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 tablespoon chopped shallots (small red onions)
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
1 teaspoon of oregano
1 teaspoon of freshly chopped basil
1 teaspoon of fish sauce
little bit of sliced ginger
pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon honey
one cup of milk(low fat if you wish) mixed with 1 tablespoon of cornstarch to make a slur(watery paste)
2 tablespoons of cooking oil


1) On a wok or frying pan, heat the oil, then add the onions and stir fry till fragrant, then add in the sesame seeds followed by garlic and ginger.

2) Add in the chili paste, salt and pepper. You will start to smell the strong chili paste.

3) Add in your vegetables followed by the tuna chunks.

4) Add in the whole can of tomatoes, followed by the oregano and basil.

5) Stir in honey and fish sauce.

6) Toss in the cooked pasta and stir well.

7) Slowly add your milky slur while stir frying your pasta. You should get a slightly creamy carbonara style texture.

8) Serve with grated cheese and freshly ground pepper. I omitted the cheese.



  1. I tried making this today... the chicken version...

    and... uwaaaa, I couldn't finish it!! Too too spicy for me! >_< Should have reduced the amount of chilli paste, but I was like, "Okay ni..." *sighs*

    Also... mine doesn't look as nice as yours :( I have too much tomatoes, I think, and too much milk as well. (Or maybe, just not enough pasta....)

  2. perhaps I underestimated the amount of pasta. Consider adding more pasta to your dish next time and as for the milk slur, add them in slowly bit by bit while stirring. Once you feel it is sticky enough, you can stop adding.

  3. no, actually, I reduced everything accordingly. No way can I finish 300g of pasta :P So I just used ~100g (my usual serving size) and reduced everything else. But I had a big can of tomatoes and had no where else to put it, so in the pasta it went. :P And thanks for the tip about the milk, hehe.

  4. One whole can of tomatoes? No wonder you said you had too much tomatoes!