This past CSA share brought us a bounty of summer vegetables including lots of the greatest basics: onion, peppers, eggplant, and tomatoes. I had a great recipe from the CSA website for eggplant pasta salad, but I made some additions. The recipe was originally from Real Simple, which was sort of a puttanesca. I took a bit of the ingredients there and mashed everything together.

Eggplant Pasta Salad
adapted from Real Simple Magazine

3 tablespoons olive oil
2 green bell peppers, sliced
1 eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 cup fresh tomatoes
1/4 cup red sauce of your choice
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
kosher salt and pepper
1 tablespoon sugar
1 bunch basil, diced
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted (optional)
2 tablespoons capers
1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1/2 pound fresh pasta

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add olive oil, and fresh pasta. Cook for approximately 5 minutes, less for al dante. *You may also use dried pasta.

Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the peppers and cook, 3 minutes. Stir in the eggplant and tomatoes.

Stir in the tomato sauce, then add the vinegar, 1 tablespoon sugar, salt and pepper. Cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the eggplant is tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the capers, pine nuts, basil and parsley.

Strain the cooked pasta, toss with olive oil and add the eggplant mixture. Stir well and serve hot or at room temperature.

This dish was packed with flavor. I don’t think I added enough pasta, but I wanted to save our fresh pasta for a second meal. However, all of the wonderful and fresh vegetables shone through. Each bite was rich with flavor from the parsley and basil. This is a great summer staple and a wonderful way to use CSA vegetables quickly and easily. It would be easy to add zucchini, mushrooms, greens, or any type of summer vegetable you have on hand. Also somewhat similar to ratatouille or caponata. Yum!

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