Ricotta, Eggplant and Almond Pasta is the ultimate in combination cuisine. The roasted almonds of winter join the pastel eggplants of spring leaving your taste buds just…wow. The cinnamon in the sauce adds spice to the creamy ricotta. And while this dish may channel the best of both Christmas and Easter (…Chraster, anyone?), lets focus on the dishes of the present, thinking of our table, and today, as a delicious gift.
Pasta with Eggplant, Ricotta and Almonds (serves 4-6)
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups chopped onions
¼ teaspoon salt
1 medium eggplant
¼ cup water
12 ounces chunky-shaped whole grain pasta
1 15-ounce container fat-free ricotta
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ cup grated parmesan
1 cup chopped fresh basil
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cups diced fresh tomatoes
¼ cup toasted almonds
Warm olive oil in a skillet. Cook onions and salt, stirring frequently, until lightly browned. Meanwhile, cut eggplant into ½ inch cubes. Add eggplant to onions and stir fry for three minutes. Then, add water, cover, and cook at medium-heat, stirring frequently, for about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to boil, and cook pasta is slightly firm.
While pasta cooks, mix ricotta, cinnamon and grated cheese, basil, salt and pepper in a large serving bowl.
When the pasta is al dente, reserve a cup of cooking liquid, and drain. Stir pasta into ricotta mixture, adding some cooking liquid if needed to evenly coat noodles. Stir in cooked eggplant and onions and fresh tomatoes. Chop almonds and roast in separate pan for three minutes
Ricotta, Eggplant and Almond Pasta may not have a personal holiday, but it forever has a place at the dinner table. And, with a dish so fantastic, why limit your enjoyment to just one calendar space? The more you plate this creamy pasta the richer your present truly is.
cooking time: 40 minutes