This quick eggplant pasta is a great end of the week dish, when you need to go shopping and are working off of pantry staples and fridge leftovers. I had half a very large eggplant that needed a home, and this is what I came up with. I quite enjoyed it, and it was quick to get on the table.
1 portion your favorite pasta (portion size and pasta preference are very subjective)
2 cups peeled eggplant, cut into chunks
1-2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 Tbsp tomato paste
2 tsps dry white wine
1/4 tsp herbes de Provence, Za'atar or dried oregano
Generous pinch of red pepper flakes
2 Tbsps grated Parmesan
2 tsps olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Bring a pan of salted water to the boil.
Add the dried pasta and, on top of that, a steamer containing the eggplant. Cover and cook for 8 minutes, before removing the steamer with the eggplant. Finish cooking the pasta according to the directions on the pasta.
A couple of minutes before the eggplant comes out of the pan, heat the oil in a large skillet and, as soon as it shimmers. add the garlic and spices.
Cook, for a minute or so, stirring to keep the garlic from burning, until it is fragrant. Add the tomato paste and stir to combine, before adding the cooked eggplant, the white wine and some salt and pepper.
Using a potato masher or the back of a fork, heat through, mashing the eggplant down into a chunky paste. Add 1/4 cup of the pasta water to the eggplant and continue to mash into a chunky sauce.
By now the pasta should be ready so drain it and add it to the skillet with the sauce. Stir to combine with the sauce and stir in one and a half tablespoons of the Parmesan. Stir to combine the cheese with the sauce.
Check for seasoning and transfer to a serving dish, topped with the remaining Parmesan.