Spaghetti with minty aubergine and sun-dried tomato sauce

Aubergines are cheap and nutritious and make a great base for a spaghetti sauce. I watched Rick Stein make something similar to this recipe based on a Sicilian dish but he used tinned tomatoes which I didn’t have (very unusual for me) so I made it with a few sun-dried tomatoes and tomato puree instead. Actually I think it’s better this way because the flavour of the aubergine doesn’t get drowned by the mass of tomatoes and the oil from the sun dried tomatoes makes everything deliciously salty and glossy.

Ingredients 

  • 1 aubergine chopped into finger shaped chunks – I have stopped salting aubergines in advance to extract the bitterness – I don’t think that’s necessary.
  •  Handful of sun-dried tomatoes (I used Sainsbury’s anti pasto version), roughly chopped.
  • 1 clove of garlic, crushed.
  • 1 tablespoon of tomato puree.
  • Glug or two of dry white wine (just because I had this in the fridge and thought it would improve flavour).
  • About 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh mint.
  • Salt and pepper.
  • Spaghetti (I used wholemeal).

Method

  1. Put the kettle on for the spaghetti water. Heat a small amount of the oil from the sun-dried tomato jar in a pan, add the crushed garlic and slowly heat. Add the chopped aubergines and cook on a low heat for about 5 minutes.
  2. Get the spaghetti cooking in a large saucepan. Add the sun-dried tomatoes, tomato puree, wine, salt and pepper and half the mint to the aubergine mixture. Cook for about 10 minutes or until the aubergine is soft and silky. If the mixture gets too dry add some of the spaghetti water.
  3. Drain the spaghetti and add the sauce. Garnish with the remaining mint before serving.

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