Pasta with eggplant, tomatoes and ricotta


1 lb eggplant, sliced lengthwise
1/4″ thick
salt olive
oil for frying
3 lb fresh ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and cut into pieces
1 garlic clove
A handful of fresh basil leaves, washed and dried
1 lb ricotta cheese, sieved
1 lb penette or other short pasta
1/3 cup freshly grated parmesan
1/3 cup freshly grated pecorino cheese

Freshly ground pepper

How to prepare

Layer the eggplant in a colander, salting each layer. Place a weighted plate on top and leave for at least an hour. Rinse and pat dry. Fry the eggplant in an” of hot oil in a skillet over medium high heat until browned. Drain on paper towels and salt lightly while hot. When cool, tear into strips with your hands. Put the tomatoes and garlic in a large frying pan and cook over medium high heat, stirring often, for 15 minutes, mashing the tomatoes with the back of a wooden spoon. Add salt to taste and a few basil leaves, finely chopped. Remove the pan from the heat and add the ricotta, mixing well to make a smooth sauce. Cook the pennette in boiling salted water until al dente. Drain and dress with parmesan and pecorino. Add the hot sauce, discarding the garlic if possible. Add the eggplant strips and toss well. Sprinkle the remaining basil over the pasta. Serve at once and pass the pepper mill. Serves 4-6

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