California Central Coast Recipes

Eggplant Arrabiatta with Spaghetti

For eggplant lovers that like a little extra "kick" to their meal, Eggplant Arrabiata is a great one to have in your recipe repertoire.

Italian Arrabiata sauces derive their moniker "Arrabiata" - meaning "angry" from the hot pepper. The traditional Arrabiata also has tomatoes, and since eggplant and tomatoes naturally go together., this recipe really showcases that union.

Serve it with a nice salad, some crusty bread , and a red wine and you're all set for a meal with gusto.

Use your personal preference on how much crushed red pepper to use. 2018, Eggplant Arrabiatta with Spaghetti
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 50 minutes
re-calculate ingredients for:


2 Medium Eggplant , pealed and cut into 1/2 inch cubes ( About 8 cups cubed.)
1/2 cup Extra-virgin Olive Oil
5 medium garlic cloves , crushed
1/2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
2-1/2 pounds fresh tomatoes , coarsely chopped
1-1/2 cup fresh torn Basil leaves , loosely packed , plus extra whole basil leaves for garnish
3 Tablespoons Tomato paste rounded , (optional ) rounded
Parmesan cheese , freshly grated
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup White wine , optional

1 pound thick spaghetti

Preparation Directions.

1 Heat olive oil over medium-low heat in a large stockpot. Add cubed eggplant, raise temperature to medium-high and saute for about 10 minutes until lightly golden on all sides. Lightly salt and pepper. Saute the eggplant a couple minutes more.

2 Remove eggplant from pan with a slotted spoon and set aside, covered to keep warm until later,

3 Cooking over medium-low heat, add the garlic and the red pepper and saute until garlic is fragrant and lightly golden.. You may need a little additional olive oil. Do not brown garlic.

4 Add the tomatoes and basil, stir well and cover pan. Simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. If sauce is too dry, add a little white wine. If sauce has too much liquid, add as much tomato paste as necessary to thicken.

5 After sauce has cooked for about 20 minutes, add the eggplant back to the tomato mixture, stirring well to distribute eggplant evenly throughout sauce. Cook until eggplant is heated through. (about 5 minutes or so.)

6 Meanwhile, cook the pasta in boiling salted water until al dente or according to the pasta package. Drain the pasta and add to the eggplant-tomato mixture. Toss well. Remove from heat.

7 Serve on individual dinner plates, topping each with a little basil for garnish.

8 Have plenty of grated Parmesan for the table.

Wine and Food Pairing and Serving Suggestions.

Serve this spicy dish with a Sangiovese wine.

A tip from Sue!

Beware cooking wine!

Never use a "so-called cooking wine" that's marketed specifically as a cooking wine for your sauce. Only use a wine that would not be objectionable to drink by itself. In lighter sauces a good one to use is a nice Fume' Blanc or Sauvignon Blanc. In stronger red sauces, use a decent red wine such as a Barolo, Zinfandel or Cabernet.