Monday, June 27, 2011

June 25: Chicken in a Fresh Tomato and Eggplant Sauce with Spaghetti

   Coarse salt
1 pound spaghetti
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 baby eggplant or 1 small, firm eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 1/3 pounds chicken tenders, cut into small bite-size pieces
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped
   Coarse black pepper
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 1/2 cups chicken stock or broth
1 pint red cherry or grape tomatoes
1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
   Crusty bread, to pass at the table

Bring a  large pot of water to a boil. Once it is boiling, salt the water and cook the pasta al dente. Heads up: you will need to reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water before draining.

Preheat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat with 3 tablespoons of the EVOO. Add the eggplant and cook, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 to 6 minutes.

Remove the eggplant from the skillet to a plate and cover with aluminum foil to keep warm; return the skillet to the stove.

Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of EVOO. Add the chicken and cook to lightly brown, about 4 to 5 minutes.

Add the onions and garlic and return the eggplant to the skillet, season with salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper flakes, and continue to cook for 3 to 4 minutes.

 Add the white wine and chicken stock, bring up to a simmer, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes more.

Add the cherry tomatoes and the reserved pasta cooking water and cook until the tomatoes begin to burst.

Add the parsley and the cooked pasta, toss to coat, and cook for  to 2 minutes, or until the sauce tightens up around the pasta. Turn the heat off and add the grated Parmesan cheese.

Toss to coat the spaghetti, then serve it up. Scoop up any sauce left in the pan and divide it atop the pasta. Pass the crusty bread.


This meal is delicious! I love the way the sauce gets really creamy. I didn't change the recipe except to use Parmesan instead of Parmigiano-Reggiano, and I used thin spaghetti because that's what I had in my cupboard. I used grape tomatoes and a small eggplant.

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