Whoa. Step back. This is dangerously good. A pasta sauce with a rockin’ spicy kick and delicious eggplant (don’t worry, no cucumbers were harmed in the making of this dish). Since the bits of eggplant and red pepper are bite size even the choice of penne (or other smaller pasta like rigatoni) works with developing a perfect bite without too much hassle.
NOTE: These measurements makes pasta for two people. I had to double the recipe for a dinner party for four people. Recipe adapted from Good Things Catered
- 1 T. olive oil
1 small onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
2 large red peppers, roasted
1 tsp. vegetable or canola oil
1 large (28 oz) can whole tomatoes, lightly drained and coarsely chopped
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp crushed chili peppers
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
2 tsp. brown sugar
- 1 T. olive oil
1 medium eggplant, chopped
2 large red peppers, sliced into 1 1/2 – 2 inch pieces
Box of penne
spicy red pepper sauce, prepared ahead
parsley for garnish, optional
1. Roast peppers: Set oven to broil. Place peppers on a cookie sheet. Using pastry brush, lightly coast peppers with oil. Roast in oven for 30-45 minutes, turning every 20 minutes or so. Peppers should look inflated with dark roasted spots around.
2. In bowl of food processor, pulse roasted red peppers until relatively smooth and set aside
3. In large stock pot over medium heat, heat oil. Add diced onion and cook until translucent.
4. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add pureed red peppers and chopped tomatoes and heat until starting to bubble.
5. Turn heat to a simmer and add remaining ingredients, stirring to combine.
1. Cook pasta. (easy enough, right?)
2. In large pan heat oil over medium high heat. Add eggplant and cook, stirring constantly, until beginning to become tender, about 10 minutes.
3. Add red pepper and continue sauteing until peppers become crisp tender, about 3-5 minutes.
4. Add pasta sauce and stir to combine, bringing to a slight simmer.
5. Add pasta, stir to combine, add parsley as garnish and serve immediately.