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Peanut-Crusted Eggplant with Goat Cheese & Pasta

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1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
3 cups fresh or canned crushed tomatoes in thick puree (one 28-ounce can)
1 teaspoon fresh tarragon
1 1/4 teaspoons salt, divided
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, divided
2 eggplants
1 cup dry breadcrumbs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup crushed peanuts
4 eggs
Oil, for frying
1/2 pound mild goat cheese
16 ounces pasta

  • In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over moderately low heat. Chop the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes—chop if using fresh—to onions in pan along with tarragon, 3/4 teaspoon salt and the sugar. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 25 minutes. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon of the pepper.
  • Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Peel eggplants and slice into 16 1/2-inch-thick rounds. In a medium bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, Parmesan, peanuts and the remaining salt and pepper.
  • Beat eggs slightly in shallow dish. Dip each slice of eggplant in the eggs and then in the breadcrumb mixture, coating well.
  • In a large frying pan, heat about half an inch of oil over moderate heat until very hot.
  • Fry the eggplant in batches, turning once, until golden and cooked through, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels.
  • Arrange half of the eggplant slices in a single layer on a baking sheet. Put a slice of goat cheese on top of each and then top with the remaining eggplant slices. Bake until the cheese melts, about 10 minutes.
  • Cook noodles according to package directions. Drain and top each serving with 1/4 of sauce. Top each serving with two pieces of the finished eggplant.

Servings: 4. Serving size: 1/4 of dish. Per serving: 967 calories, 45.3 g protein, 28.8 g fat, 128.2 g carbohydrates, 15.4 g dietary fiber, 1,405 mg sodium, 16.6 g sugars

David OrrBowie-Cass EC

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