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Grilled Eggplant Ragu

We love the idea of mixing fresh ingredients, like eggplant, with our tomato sauces.  This eggplant ragu is great for fall. We love using parpadelle but any long pasta will do.

1 jar Due Cellucci Tomato Basil Sauce (or Spicy Arrabbiata Sauce)
3 small/medium eggplants (or 2 large), cut in half lengthwise
2-3 cloves garlic minced
1/2 large onion well minced
4 Roma tomatoes OR 6 Campari tomatoes
2-3 tbsp of olive oil (plus another 2-3 Tbsp to finish dish)
1 tsp Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper to taste
Crushed red pepper flakes to taste
Fresh Basil – a handful or more of torn basil
Grated parmigiano, for finish if desired
1lb long pasta of choice (parpadelle, fettucine, spaghetti, etc)

1) Brush both sides of Eggplant with olive oil.  Using stovetop grill pan, grill both sides of all eggplant to a nice golden brown (don’t burn). Turn off flame and cover with lid and let finish in steam (for maybe 10 minutes… while your chopping and prepping other ingredients). Dice eggplant and set aside.

2) In large sauté pan, heat oil on medium/high heat.  Add minced onion to oil, cook to translucent (not brown so stir often).

3) Lower heat and add minced garlic. Cook for a minute just until fragrant.

4) Add in diced tomatoes, stir on low. Add in diced eggplant. Stir well for a minute or 2 and then add in one jar of Due Cellucci Tomato Basil. Season with salt/pepper (to taste), Italian seasoning, red pepper flakes. Simmer on Low for about 5 mins.

5) Remove from heat, add in basil and finish with a couple of glugs of olive oil (a glug is about a tbsp so maybe 2-3 tbsp)

6) Stir well and mix in cooked pasta of choice.

7) Plate and sprinkle with grated parmigiano and serve!

Optional.  Add cooked sausage to the dish at step 5.  We liked the idea of a cooked crumbled sausage (the insides without the casings)