Sugo alle melanzane

It was one of those days around here.

I was out all day with a tour group and didn’t get home until just in time to walk the dogs. The wife is under the weather and a little stressed about the new job. It’s Thursday night…which is pasta night around here. What to have that is satisfying but not just everyday sauce.

Then the aha! moment.

I’d acquired two smallish eggplants as payment for a favor.  Why not an eggplant/tomato sauce for the pasta?

A couple of years ago we had discovered an imported, jarred sauce that included eggplant. It was just different enough from the everyday, familiar sauces and we were fond of it.

Using that thought for inspiration, here’s what I did:

Sugo alle melanzane (Eggpant Sauce)

I washed the eggplants and then cut them into a rough dice (I was rushed. A little more time and a nice quarter inch dice would be perfect).  NOTE: I did not peel the eggplant; nor did I salt them and leave them to “weep”.  They were smallish and young and not bitter at all.

In a large skillet, I heated up some extra virgin olive oil over medium heat. When it started to shimmer, I threw in the cut-up eggplant and tossed it around.  I gave the eggplant a generous sprinkle of salt and cracked pepper.

After about two minutes, I added the garlic which I had chopped.  I also tossed in a healthy pinch of dried red pepper flakes.

A quick stir or two and then I added the tomatoes. (When using canned whole plum tomatoes, crush them with your hands first so they are broken up). Stir.  Keep a watch, stir or toss frequently to keep at a low simmer.

In the pot of boiling, salted water toss in a pound of pasta (we used penne). Cook until just al dente.  About half way through the cooking time for the pasta, add half of the fresh basil, minced to the sauce. When the pasta is done, mix a ladle or two of the pasta cooking water into the skillet with the sauce.  Drain the pasta. Toss with the sauce. Add the remainder of the basil.

Serves 4 – 6

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One Response to “Sugo alle melanzane”

  1. Mark Says:

    Sounds good. I’ll have to try that.

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