Wednesday, August 26, 2009

It's On My Good List Now

How do you fancy eggplant? You should really ponder this question..

In my world, for years, I thought it was nothing more than a sad, frumpy, purple vegetable with a similar taste and texture to what you find on your car wheels.... That being said, it seems to be making a mighty strong comeback and dent in the trends of food these days; it's all the buzz!! Eggplant strogonaff! Grilled eggplant panini! Eggplant capanota! Eggplant pancakes!! Believe you me- some coooky crazy cook out there will come out with eggplant cobbler.

Short story shorter-- we gave eggplant a chance last week.... I spotted a recipe in Rachel Ray Everyday that had roasted tomatoes, eggplant, and ricotta..... aka the inspiration behind THIS recipe.... it sounded palatable enough, so we whipped up our own version, and then the following evening with the leftover rubber, we made an eggplant pizza (to be posted). So, after both nights of eggplant concoctions, I can say I'm semi in-like with the stuff. Not in-love yet, just semi-like..

Okay...I really really like it. There.

Eggplant ain't so bad after all!!!

Roasted Tomato and Eggplant Pasta

1/2 lb whole wheat pasta penne
1 cup eggplant, cut into small dices
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 pint cherry tomatoes
2 tbsp or so, olive oil
Salt and pepper (right?? of course)
Fresh basil
Fresh mint
Parm. Cheese

In a large pot of boiling water, dump your pasta in and cook until al dente. Reserve a ladles full worth of water (about 1.4-1/2 cup).... Meanwhile in a large skillet, turn up the heat and pour in 2 Tbsp of olive oil: add tomatoes and eggplant, stirring all the while.... After a few minutes, turn down the heat to medium and add the garlic. Cover, and let everything cook until the tomatoes begin to pop open and the eggplant is soft (it does take at least 10 to 15 minutes and if things start looking shabby and the veggies begin to burn at all, add more oil, or turn down the heat)

Once the tomatoes have popped and the eggplant is tender, add the reserved pasta water, as well as the cooked pasta. Give it all a good stir so that it's all incorporated and pretty. Remove from heat, stir in fresh herbs, parm. cheese and knock yourself out.

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