Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Eggplant at the end of the Rainbow

Things are going really well in London.  Not only because I've recently returned from what can really only be called a vacation in Copenhagen.  And, as you can see in the photo above, the archives are a veritable treasure at the end of the rainbow...

And yet, I have been very embarrassed because I haven't been taking pictures of food, and I have been hiding from my blog.

There's been visits and reunions



The National Front

We shared disapproval with a policeman and another man on the street.  They came actually quite close, and they looked so...apprehensive.  Like they felt a little ashamed and were not sure what they would encounter.  But as the policeman said, I guess this is democracy.

I promise there will be more pictures of food soon.  I have plans to make something with mushrooms and farro for dinner tonight, and there are not one, but two Thanksgiving meals coming up!  In the meantime, here's a picture-less recipe for my dinner from a couple nights ago.

Simple and Saucy Eggplant Pasta
Takes 30 minutes
Makes 3-4 servings

a slice of butter
2 cloves garlic, smashed
2 Italian eggplants, chopped into 1 inch cubes
1 can tomatoes (28 oz.)
1/2 package penne

1 medium size ball of fresh mozzarella

In a large skillet, heat about 2 tbsp. olive oil and the little bit of butter on medium heat.  When the butter is melted, add the garlic, and saute until fragrant.  Add the eggplant, and saute for 10-15 minutes.  You don't have to keep stirring.  Make sure there is enough oil, and let them brown but not burn.   When they appear soft and take up much less room in the pan, add the tomatoes and pepper to taste.  Crushed red pepper is good too if you like spicy.    Turn the heat down to low, and let simmer for about 10-15 minutes until thickened.  Towards the end, begin stirring to make sure it doesn't burn on the bottom.  Check for salt.

Meanwhile, once you've added the tomatoes, you can start water for pasta.  Cook according to package directions.  When the pasta is almost finished, add to the sauce pan, and finish cooking in the pan.  You can add some of the pasta water too if your sauce is looking thicker than you'd like.

If you'd like, chop up the mozzarella into 1/2 inch cubes and add once the pasta is done and you've turned off the heat.  Top with more pepper and parmesan if you'd like.  But really, the pasta is good without any cheese at all.

This would also be delicious with fresh herbs, basil or parsley.  Or olives!  Add a 1/4 cup chopped kalamata or oil cured olives when you add the eggplant, for super olive flavor.  Yum.

Ok, here's something I do have a picture for: poached eggs and polenta!  I had such a craving on Sunday, and so I just went for it.  They were misshapen and delicious!

I ate them with a really simple tomato salad (salt, pepper, olive oil), and some Punjabi Pickles I picked up at the local market.


  1. Um, Radhika, that is so not a vegan recipe!! change that tag!! I am wondering if I should try making it though and see if I can finally overcome my dislike of eggplants.... I wonder if cook them enough they will taste better to me.

    your egg breakfast looks awesome. I am jealous of those pretty tomatoes!

  2. i write very clearly that this could be a vegan recipe (and delicious) without the cheese. you also (obvi) do not have to add the butter. the tag stays!

    it is really important to cook eggplant for long enough so they are not remotely rubbery. you could also roast them in the oven (425 for 15-20 minutes), make the sauce separately, and add them for the last 5 minutes or so of cooking time.