Eggplant Pomodoro Pasta.

If you are an eggplant lover, this dish is for you! If you are on the fence about eggplant this will make you a lover for sure.

Eggplant and tomato sauce flavored with capers and green olives and mixed with quinoa spaghetti, fresh parsley, and Parmesan cheese.

This Eggplant Pomodoro Pasta is a 30-minute vegetarian and gluten-free dish that you can make on any night.

But this is what’s for dinner tonight.

The summer is officially over. Our AC is turned off, most days , windows are open,I am loving the fresh breeze.

I hate to see Summer end. But I love fall veggies

Personally, if I had my way I would spend all day outside.

I keep finding excuses to go outside even though I should be home cleaning etc…. I am sure you know the feeling.

Having a bone disease I know I will be stuck indoors more than I would like because my bones can’t deal with the cold.

So any day above 65 is a blessing for me.

Today’s recipe, Eggplant Pomodoro Pasta, is a summer dish but I will.

Soon I will be having Squash and quinoa pasta but not today.

If you have ever cooked eggplants before, you would know, sometimes, especially if it is an older eggplant, its brown seeds might cause it taste bitter. To get rid of the bitterness, my mother used to put sliced eggplants in a bowl of water with a generous amount of salt. Letting it sit in salty water for 10-15 minutes would improve the taste of the flesh and get rid of the bitterness. Alternatively, you can also sprinkle your eggplant with salt and let is sit on the counter for 20-30 minutes. In both methods, it is imperative to pat dry them with paper towels and make sure they are as dry as possible.

I love quinoa spaghetti as I think it is healthier than regular spaghetti.

Plus it is gluten-free, but you can always use regular semolina flour pasta.

INGREDIENTS

1 pound quinoa or brown rice pasta,

2 medium eggplant or 5 small (1 pound), cut into 1-inch small cubes no need to peel but I stipe peel mine.

1 tbspn salt is what is usually used

I use less say a large teaspoon total and then I season into cooking a bit more.

2 tablespoons olive oil

4 cloves of garlic

1 tablespoon tomato paste

8 medium sized Roma tomatoes, cut into small cubes

1 cup colorful cherry tomatoes, sliced

3-4 tablespoons capers, drained and rinsed

½ cup green olives, pitted and sliced

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

salt and pepper *

4 scallions, chopped both green and white parts

½ cup Italian Parsley, rinsed and chopped thinly

1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

½ cup lightly roasted pine nuts (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Cook the pasta according to the package instructions. Reserve one cup of the pasta liquid. Set aside.

2. As the pasta is cooking, make the eggplant pomodoro sauce: Fill a bowl with 4 cups of cold tab water. Add a tablespoon of salt. Place the eggplant cubes into the salty water. Let it sit for 10 minutes in water. Rinse and place on a sheet of paper towels to dry.

3. Heat olive oil in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet (or any heavy bottom pan) and add in the eggplant. Cook, stirring frequently, for 5-6 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.

4. Stir in the tomato paste and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.

5. Add in the Roma tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, capers, and green olives. Season with ½ teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper. Pour the balsamic vinegar into the sauce. Give everything a gentle stir and let it cook for 10-15 minutes in medium heat. Taste for seasoning and add if necessary.

6. Place the cooked pasta into the sauce (alternatively you can place everything in a large bowl). Sprinkle it with scallions, parsley, Parmesan cheese, and pine nuts (if using). If the pasta feels dry, use some of the reserved pasta liquid. Give it a toss to distribute the sauce evenly.

7. Serve with more Parmesan cheese parsley on the side.

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