Sicilian Pasta alla Norma
Pasta alla Norma is a classic, Sicilian dish that is full of rich flavors. The roasted eggplant and the slowly cooked tomato sauce are an incredibly satisfying combination.
This recipe takes approximately 50 minutes, but much of it is hands-off. I was able to make two salads while the tomato sauce was simmer and the eggplant was roasting - so while I was still in the kitchen, it felt like this dish was on auto-pilot. It also made the house smell great - I love when a tomato sauce is bubbling away on the stove.
The weather turned a bit chillier last week, which made me want pasta. I overheard people in the grocery store talking about how excited they were that it was "sweater weather" and they couldn't wait till it was fall. I am not excited for fall yet - I love the food, and Halloween, and Thanksgiving - but I am NOT ready for cold weather again.
Enjoy this hearty dish and its gorgeous flavors!
Pasta alla Norma
Makes 4 to 6 servings | Prep Time: 8 minutes | Total Time: about 50 minutes
In a jelly roll pan, combine eggplant, 1/2 cup olive oil, pinch of salt and pepper, and half the red pepper flakes. Bake eggplant at 400 F for 40 minutes, tossing occasionally.
In a skillet over medium high heat, add olive oil. When heated, add garlic and oregano. Cook for 30 seconds and then add the tomatoes, 3 tablespoons of olive oil, tomato paste, 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.
Simmer for 35 to 40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sauce has thickened and is jam-like.
Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions.
Drain the pasta. Combine the tomato sauce and the eggplant, then toss in the pasta. Stir to combine and top with grated cheese and basil.
Keeps in refrigerator for up to 3 days.
1 1/2 pounds eggplant (about 2 medium), diced into 1 inch cubes
1/4 cup, plus 3 tablespoons olive oil
salt and pepper
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 1/2 pounds tomatoes (about 5 medium tomatoes), coarsely diced
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 pound pasta, either spaghetti, linguini, or pappardelle
1/2 cup grated ricotta salata or parmesan
1/2 cup chopped basil
This recipe is adapted from the New York Times Pasta All Norma recipe.