Spaghetti with Eggplant, Mushrooms, & Ricotta Salata 

I created this spaghetti dish with the ingredients I had in my refrigerator this morning. The pasta is delicious, and the vegetables and cheese really make this a savory dish. Feel free to modify based upon your favorite ingredients.



1 lb. Spaghetti or Linguini
4 Cloves of Garlic, Chopped
4 Tbsp. Olive Oil
½ Eggplant, Diced
2 Tbsp. Pesto Sauce (See recipe)
6 Button Mushrooms, Chopped
¼ Tsp. Salt
½ Cup Ricotta Salata, Crumbled
2 Tbsp. Flat Leaf Parsley, Chopped or Fresh Basil, Chopped (Garnish)

Bring a large pot of well salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook according to package directions (approx. 8-10 minutes for al dente pasta). While the pasta cooks, combine the garlic, and 2 Tbsp. of olive oil in a large sauté pan over low heat, stirring until the garlic becomes light brown, approx. 2 minutes. Add the diced eggplant and cook until the eggplant is golden brown, approx. 4 minutes. Add the pesto sauce, stir, then remove the eggplant from the pan and set aside. To the same sauté pan, add the remaining 2 Tbsp. of olive oil and add the chopped mushrooms. Saute until golden brown, approx. 3 minutes. Add the eggplant mixture back to the sauté pan and combine flavors. Before draining the pasta, reserve about ½ cup of the cooking water. Add the cooking liquid and drained pasta to the vegetable mixture in the sauté pan. Mix well to combine the flavors. Add the crumbled ricotta salata and the fresh herbs. Serve warm.