Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Pasta alla Norma
Pasta alla Norma
It's only Tuesday and this just hasn't been my week. Last night I planned to meet a friend at a minor-league baseball game, but it was standing room only when we got there a half hour before the game started.
I guess it was a blessing in disguise because instead of the three hot dogs and beer I planned to eat (it was dime-a-dog) I had a healthy bowl of tofu and veggie stir fry with brown rice an Mongolian BBQ. It may have been good for the waistline, but I was really looking forward to eating crappy hot dogs.
And today, I thought I was being super thrifty by making stock in the slow cooker while I was at work. I put two carcasses, tons o' veggies and covered it with water. Then my power went out.
I have no way of knowing if it was just a out and then on again or if it was out for a while — I only know it was out for less than 8 hours. I decided not to take my chances.
Meanwhile, I was super busy at work and practically had to bolt from my desk a little after noon to grab this wrap from the healthy station in the cafeteria. I try to bring a lunch on Tuesdays because it's so hard to resist the normal Tuesday wrap station complete with sweet potato chips. The was an OK substitute, but I prefer the bad for me kind.
Turkey wrap — complete with bad florescent lighting
Dinner was actually pretty good — End of Summer Pasta alla Norma. This version didn't have onions, but it definitely could use some. Maybe some red pepper flakes at the very least. It was missing something.. that's for sure. The version came from the most recent issue of Everyday with Rachael Ray and the addition of ricotta was actually pretty great. I love ricotta as a topping for pasta dishes. Here's my version as I made it tonight. I left some things out and reduced the amount of oil, pasta and cheese to keep it lower in calories.
End of Summer Pasta all Norma
Adapted from Everyday with Rachael Ray. Serves 4.
8 ounces whole wheat penne
4 tsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 eggplant, peeled and diced
2 pints grape tomatoes
salt and pepper
1 cup basil, chopped
1 cup part-skim ricotta (I used Sargento Light)
Bring a big pot of salted water to a boil, add pasta, and cook according to the package's directions and drain, reserving a bit of the pasta's cooking water.
Meanwhile, warm the oil over medium-high heat in a large saute pan. Add the garlic and let cook about a minute. Then add the eggplant and tomatoes and salt and pepper. Cover.
Cook the tomatoes and eggplant over medium-high heat, stirring half way through, until eggplant is soft and tomatoes burst — about 12 minutes. Add reserved pasta water until it forms a sauce. Add in pasta and stir in basil. Serve topped with ricotta cheese.