Rigatoni with Eggplant and Pine Nut Crunch

Rigatoni with Eggplant and Pine Nut Crunch


A Delicious Recipe Bon Appetit


Ingredients

Nonstick vegetable oil spray

1 un-peeled large eggplant (1 1/2 to 1 3/4 pounds), cut into 1/2-inch cubes

2 medium yellow bell peppers, cut into 1/2-inch squares

2 cups grape tomatoes

3 large garlic cloves, divided

1/3 cup olive oil

2 cups (firmly packed) fresh basil leaves, divided

1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided

1/4 cup pine nuts

1 28-ounce can whole tomatoes in juice

1 cup heavy whipping cream

1 pound rigatoni

1 pound whole-milk mozzarella cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes


Preparation

Preheat oven to 425°F. Spray large rimmed baking sheet with nonstick spray; add eggplant and peppers. Cut tomatoes in half lengthwise; add to sheet. Using garlic press, squeeze 1 garlic clove onto vegetables. Drizzle vegetables with oil; toss. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast vegetables until tender, stirring often, 35 to 45 minutes.


Combine 2/3 cup basil, 1/2 cup Parmesan, pine nuts, and 1 garlic clove in mini processor. Blend until crumbly. Season topping with salt.


Blend tomatoes with juice, cream, 1 1/3 cups basil, and 1 garlic clove in processor until smooth. Season sauce with salt and pepper.


Cook pasta in pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally; drain. Return to pot. Toss with vegetables, sauce, and 1/2 cup Parmesan. 


Transfer to 13x9x2-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with mozzarella and pine nut topping.


Bake pasta until heated through, 25 to 35 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes and serve.


I long for the next seasons eggplant harvest.