Saturday, June 23, 2012

Penne alla Norma

 This is a lovely recipe. I took a recipe from Martha Stewart and altered it a little. It took me much longer than I expected, but I imagine if I would have had things prepped and chopped before hand, it would have gone much quicker.

What you'll need:
  • 1 pound box of penne rigate, but any pasta will work. I cooked the whole box but only used 3/4 of it. I set the rest aside and saved it for later.
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, thinly chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 medium or 3/4 of a large one, cut into 3/4-inch chunks
  • 4 medium tomatoes, chopped into small chunks
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • optional fresh basil for garnish
  • optional ricotta cheese for garnish
Step one: cook the pasta according to the directions on the box.
Step two: Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. (A LARGE skillet. This recipe makes a whole lot of food!) Add onion, garlic, and crushed red pepper; cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes.
Step three: Add eggplant to skillet. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover, and cook until eggplant begins to release juices, about 5 minutes. Uncover; cook, stirring, until tender, 3 to 4 minutes (if the bottom of your pan browns too much, add a few tablespoons water, and scrape with a spoon).
Step four:  Add tomatoes, tomato paste, and 1/4 cup water to skillet; cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes.
 Step five: Add pasta to the sauce and reheat if necessary. Top each serving with a spoonful of ricotta, and garnish with fresh basil.
This is a perfect dish for summer entertaining. It's healthy and hearty. I'm a vegetarian so I really like to make hearty food like this- I'm not a "rabbit food" kinda' girl. I need to feel full and satisfied after a meal, and this pasta really does it for me! I hope you try it and I hope you like it!


  1. Penne is my favorite kind of pasta!!!

  2. That looks so tasty. I may have to get my fiance to cook this. (I can't cook pretty much) =D