This past weekend, I was excited to cook with the first eggplant we'd ever grown ourselves. I cannot express how excited I am that we were actually able to grow an eggplant! Is that dorky? Anyway, we wanted to make a pasta dish since, despite being people who enjoy a good bowl of noodles, hadn't had any in a while. Originally my thought was to roast a bunch of veggies together, but our taste buds were saying sauce, so we made sauce. I concocted a modified, fast version of a ratatouille, which, because of its faster cooking time, keeps the veggies intact and less mushy than some ratatouilles. The result is a chunky, herbaceous, veggie-rich pasta sauce. Tossed with whole wheat pasta, topped with Parmesan cheese and a dollop of Chris' homemade basil walnut pesto. Simple, fast, and oh so delicious!
Sunday Night Ratatouille
Makes 1 pot, enough for 4-6 meals
4 tbsp olive oil
3 large cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
1 medium eggplant, diced
1 medium zucchini, diced
2 dashes crushed red pepper
1 tbsp chopped fresh sage
1 tbsp chopped fresh oregano
1 tbsp chopped fresh basil
2 14.5-oz cans organic fire-roasted, diced tomatoes
1 tbsp organic tomato paste
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
Heat 4 tbsp olive oil in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add crushed garlic cloves and saute 3 minutes. Add eggplant and zucchini; stir to coat with oil; saute 5 minutes. Add crushed red pepper and fresh herbs; saute 1 minute. Add tomatoes, tomato paste, salt, sugar, and a pinch of fresh ground black pepper. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low and simmer 10 minutes, or until flavors meld and sauce thickens. Add more spices & herbs as desired.
Spoon over pasta and top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.