Sunday, September 7, 2014

Fregola con Melanzane (Eggplant with pasta)

I am crazy about both eggplant and the toasted pasta fregola from Sardegna.  For years I had to buy it in Italy, but now it's possible to buy fregola in Italian deli markets, which also sell pasta and flour.

Wiki on fregolaAll about Fregula

This yummy simple recipe is from the Giallo Zafferono web site:  Fregola con le melanzane 

I normally make only 1/2 a recipe or one serving if I'm trying something new.

In this case, I made two recipes with my one eggplant.  I used cherry tomatoes.

Eggplant with Fregola  (Fregola con melanzane)

Serves 4

200 g fregola pasta  (because my fregola is so precious, I use only half the amount called for)
3 T good olive oil
1 medium eggplant, washed and cubed
400 g tomatoes, peeled and chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
10 g capers, washed
30 g chopped green Italian olives
salt and pepper to taste

Pecorino Sardo (optional)

Sauté the eggplant in the olive oil, until translucent.  Add tomatoes and garlic.  Cook 15 minutes over a moderate fire.  In the meantime, cook the fregola in salted boiling water, for 10 minutes.

Drain the fregola, retaining some of the cooking water.  Add cooked fregola, capers and green olives to the eggplant mixture.  Stir to mix.  Add pasta water, as needed to make it creamy.  Serve hot.

The website states one can top with a grated Sardo Pecorino cheese.  I topped mine with a sprinkle of fresh thyme.  For the photo I did try parsley, but it wasn't the right flavor.  Thyme is perfect.

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