Casarecce Pasta Recipe with Fried Eggplant

Casarecce Pasta Recipe with Fried Eggplant

Lightly fried eggplant makes this Barilla® Collezione Casarecce pasta recipe a vegetarian delight. Casarecce is the traditional pasta used for popular Sicilian pesto recipes and it also pairs perfectly with the green and black olives and Italian San Marzano tomatoes in this veggie pasta recipe.
Photo + Recipe Credit: Barilla Executive Chef Lorenzo Boni 

1 box Barilla® Collezione Casarecce pasta 
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 eggplant, peeled and diced All-purpose flour, as needed
1 cup green olives, pitted and sliced
1 cup black olives, pitted and sliced
1 can (28 oz.) crushed Italian San Marzano tomatoes
5 leaves basil, torn into small pieces
½ cup Pecorino Romano cheese, grated Salt, to taste

1. Turn on fryer to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Season eggplant with salt, dust with flour and deep-fry until golden (about 3 minutes)
2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil
3. Meanwhile, in a skillet, sauté garlic and pepper flakes with half the olive oil for approximately 1 minute
4. Add olives and fried eggplant and sauté for several minutes. Then, add tomatoes and allow to simmer for 2 minutes. Season with salt, if needed
5. Cook pasta according to package directions and then drain and toss with the sauce
6. Stir in the remaining olive oil, Pecorino Romano cheese and basil before serving 

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