Penne with Eggplant and Mushroom Sauce
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 pound mushrooms, coarsely chopped
- 1 large eggplant*, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 tomatoes, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup canned tomato paste
- 1 tbsp dried chives, chopped
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
- 1 1/4 teaspoons sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
- 1 pound multi-grain penne
- 1 cup water
- Mozzarella cheese, shredded, for garnish (optional)
- *salt and drain eggplant before cooking in order to take any bitterness out of the eggplant.
- In a large nonstick frying pan, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil. Add the onion and cook until it is translucent, stirring constantly.
- Add another tablespoon of the oil to the pan. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally until golden brown.
- Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the pan. Stir in the eggplant and cook.
- Add the tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes.
- Add the tomato paste, water, garlic, chives, cayenne, salt and pepper.
- Bring to a simmer. Cover until the eggplant is very tender, about 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a large pot of boiling water, cook the penne (about 10-15 minutes). Drain and then toss with the sauce.