Aubergine, Tomato and Ricotta Pasta

Saturday, 28 April 2012

I sometimes feel like the aubergine gets a bad rap.  For years I always avoided it.  Recipes seemed over complicated and involved salting the aubergine to remove the bitter flavours before cooking.  This not only sounded unappealing but to someone like me who doesn’t really use salt in her cooking (gasp, I know) it seemed like a lot of unnecessary bother.  Once I finally tried cooking with aubergine I found that salting was totally unnecessary (in my experience).  I can honestly say in all the years I’ve been eating aubergines I’ve never tasted a bitter one.  Maybe I’ve been lucky.  My favourite way to cook aubergine is roasting.  I simply chop it up in to chunks and roast it in olive oil.  

For this pasta dish I added my roasted aubergine to the tomato, ricotta and basil pasta recipe I blogged about a few weeks ago.  It is a regular week night dinner in our house, especially as it’s so easy, great when you’ve had a long day at work.  Some pancetta mixed in works really well too.
Tomato, Ricotta and Basil Pasta Sauce Recipe slightly adapted from The Wednesday Chef featured on A Cup of Jo
Serves 2
1 x can plum tomatoes
Water as needed
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove of garlic
Handful of fresh basil plus extra to garnish
1 heaped tablespoon of ricotta cheese
Parmesan cheese
Your favourite gluten free pasta
To a large pan add the olive oil, garlic and plum tomatoes.  Bring to a boil and simmer gently for 30 – 40 minutes.  I usually add a bit of water if the sauce is becoming too dry.  I find the longer you leave it simmering the nicer the sauce.  In the meantime cook your pasta according to the pack instructions.  Once the sauce is ready add the basil reserving some to garnish.  Then add the ricotta and combine.  You can now mix in your roasted aubergine (see below) and pasta.  Serve immediately garnished with basil leaves and parmesan.
For the aubergine:
1 x aubergine chopped in to chunks
Olive oil for the baking tray
While I was making the sauce I tossed the chopped up aubergine in olive oil and baked in the oven on Gas Mark 6, 200°C.  Roast for about 30 - 40 minutes turning half way through cooking.  When it is ready simply add to the tomato sauce as above.


  1. One reason I think eggplant/aubergine is so overlooked is that no one knows how to cook it well. I personally like a steamed eggplant with peanut sauce, or a very swiftly fried eggplant dice over hot heat with just a little olive oil. I bet roasting creates a fairly similar texture!

    1. I think you are right Eileen. I've never tried it steamed, what a great idea. I love peanut sauce too!