My husband votes this as a favorite, and often requests it when we have eggplant in the house.
Toss with warm, cooked pasta to serve as a tasty main dish; without the pasta it is a terrific side dish.
Eggplant "shrinks" as it cooks- this recipe will serve 2 very amply.
4 c. large-diced eggplant (or thick sliced fairytales)
1 small clove garlic, minced or pressed
¼ c. diced onion
¼ c. diced celery
Pinch red pepper flakes
1 c. ½” diced tomatoes
2 tsp. red wine vinegar
½ tsp. honey
1 Tbsp. chopped Kalamata olives, optional
1 Tbsp. capers, optional
Shredded parmesan cheese for garnish, optional
Snipped celery leaves for garnish, optional
To prep and roast eggplant (can be done ahead and re-warmed)
1. Place cubes of eggplant in a sieve, toss with a couple dashes of salt, and allow to sweat over the sink for about an hour. Pat/gently squeeze between a paper or cloth towel to remove any excess moisture.
2. Preheat oven to 375°. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a bowl, toss the eggplant cubes with 2 tsp. olive oil, season with a dash of salt, then bake on the prepared baking sheet for 20-30 minutes or until they are nicely browned.
1. If serving as a main dish, cook ¼ lb. penne-type pasta according to package instructions. Drain and keep warm.
2. Saute the garlic, onion, celery, and red pepper flakes in 2 tsp. olive oil for about 2 minutes, or until soft and aromatic. Add the tomatoes, season with salt, and continue cooking on a low simmer for another 2-3 minutes to soften. Stir in the vinegar and honey (+ olives and capers if you are using) and cook for 1-2 minutes to warm through and blend flavors.
To serve, toss still-warm cooked pasta, (if using), and sauce lightly with warm eggplant or place eggplant atop pasta and spoon sauce over all; garnish with celery leaves and parmesan if desired.
Recipe created or adapted by Liz Talley, Urban Graze
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