Here is recipe number one from my mom’s cookbook. The cookbook is a three-ring binder that she put together for me full of her best recipes and my favorites. Three of these cookbooks exist: I got one, my sister got one (Clare of the kale salad), and my cousin got one (Julia, Aunt Maribeth’s daughter). I don’t even know if the three of them have all the same recipes in them. I think my mom could have some business writing cookbooks (maybe I could take photos for her…what do you think, mom?).
Any pasta dish that ends by adding cheese and baking is a winner. I cooked the whole dish in a cast-iron skillet so that I could put it in the oven to finish. If you don’t have a skillet that can go into the oven, just transfer everything to a baking dish.
- 1 medium eggplant, peeled and diced into 1 inch cubes
- ¼ + cup olive oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- one 28 ounce can of peeled whole tomatoes, chopped slightly
- ¼ cup fresh basil, chopped
- ½ cup fresh grated parmesan cheese (or asiago)
- ½ pound pasta (the recipe calls for penne, I used fusilli)
- Toss eggplant with olive oil and bake at 425 degrees, browning both sides. About 10 minutes on each side.
- Heat oil in skillet. Add onion and garlic. Saute over medium heat until soft, about 5 minutes.
- Add tomatoes, salt and pepper. Break up tomatoes and simmer 15-20 minutes until liquid is reduced.
- Meanwhile, cook the pasta.
- Add basil to tomato sauce and simmer another 5 minutes.
- Toss cooked pasta with heated sauce and baked eggplant. Mix in cheese and bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees.
- Serve with additional cheese.