Alone in the kitchen with leftover eggplant…

The title of this post is an allusion to an essay in Laurie Colwin’s book Home Cookinga book that Cook the Books Club recently featured.     Colwin’s ‘s essay is actually entitled “Alone in the Kitchen with an Eggplant” and I referenced it in my latest CTB post.

This recipe is another homage to the late Laurie Colwin (plus a desperate attempt to save some eggplant from ruin).

Spicy Eggplant Sauce and Pasta
Based on Spicy Eggplant Sauce from Pappardelle’s Pasta

1/2 c. extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 to 2 lbs. eggplant, cut into small dices
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 t.  red pepper flakes (more to taste)
1 (26.4 oz.) carton Pomi diced tomatoes (or two cans diced tomates)
2 t. fresh oregano, chopped
1/2 T. balsamic vinegar
1 c. water
Sea Salt
Freshly ground black pepper

1 lb. favorite pasta, cooked according to directions.

In a large sauce pan or kettle,  heat oil.  Once oil is very warm add eggplant, garlic and red pepper flakes.   Stir frequently to prevent eggplant from sticking and cook for about 8 minutes.

This smells delicious with all the garlic.

Stir in tomatoes, oregano, and water.

Some beautiful oregano from the herb garden.

Cook another 30-40 minutes on low until eggplant is thoroughly cooked.

Nice and jammy like.

Add balsamic and season with salt and pepper.

Cook pasta according to directions.    Drain.

Stir pasta into sauce and serve.

May garnish with a bit of fresh herbs or Parmesan.

Dinner is served. Luckily by this point I was not alone in the kitchen anymore.

Back to my own version of  “Alone in the kitchen with leftover eggplant”:

We traveled to KC this weekend where I bought some Pappardelle Pasta at the FM.    I could not remember exactly what varieties we had purchased but I wanted to use some for dinner.     I thought I had purchased some chipotle flat pasta so while in the parking lot of the grocery store, I looked up some recipes at the Pappardelle site.   I knew I had some almost ancient eggplant in the fridge the desperately needed used, so I focused on the Spicy Eggplant Sauce to accompany the chipotle pasta.

Some almost over-the-hill eggplant.

When I got home, I found that I had purchased Thai, black bean, and Harissa pastas.   No chipotle.

I thought the sauce sounded fabulous so I made it anyway to serve with some penne from the pantry.

It was delicious!  (And, I think it would have been too spicy with chipotle pasta.)

Look for some recipes that feature the Thai, black bean and harissa pastas soon.

Also, look for a post about our fabulous weekend in KC plus some more concert stories.   (Really, we are not avid  concert goers, but it seems like that is all we have been doing lately.)

Do you want some teasers?

Good food, great fun, and a super concert at one of our favorite KC institutions.

P.S.:   Check out Memories Monday at Home Cooking Memories.   Brandie featured my vintage grape jelly recipe and a few other truly homey recipes.

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