Sicilian Eggplant Marinara over Penne
- 1 medium eggplant
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (twice around the pan)
- 4 large cloves garlic, minced
- Coarse salt and black pepper, to taste
- A handful chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes
- 20 leaves fresh basil, torn or coarsely chopped
- 1 pound penne rigate, cooked until al dente
- Shaved or grated Parmigiano Reggiano or Asiago cheese, for topping
Preheat oven to 425°F.
Cut several small slits into one side of the eggplant with the tip of a sharp knife. Place eggplant directly on oven rack in the center of the hot oven, slit-side up. Roast for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Gently remove skin with a sharp knife; it should pull away easily. Using a food processor, grind the peeled eggplant into a paste and take to the stove in the processor bowl.
Heat a skillet over medium to medium-high heat. Add oil and garlic. When the garlic speaks by sizzling in the oil, add eggplant paste. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add parsley tomatoes, and basil. Heat the sauce through and toss with cooked penne pasta. Top with grated cheese, and serve immediately.