About this recipe:Although simple, the flavours in this dish work perfectly together. The salty ricotta cheese, the sweet tomato sauce and the sweet and creamy aubergine. Note the trick of pre-soaking the aubergine to guarantee that it's sweet, without that bitter edge that you sometimes find with aubergines.
Cook the passata for 30 minutes (as you want a nice thick reduced consistency) before turning off the heat and adding the basil. Meanwhile the aubergine is cut into 2cm thick round slices and soaked in cold, well-salted water for 10 minutes before being rinsed and drained.
Next shallow fry the aubergine, drain the oil on kitchen paper and set aside.
Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil and cook the pasta; drain.
Combine the tomato sauce with the drained pasta and serve with a couple of slices of aubergine on top then a generous serving of grated salty ricotta cheese. Hey presto, the flavours are amazing.
Parmesan cheese is not truly vegetarian, as it contains animal rennet. To make this dish 100% vegetarian, omit the cheese or find a suitable vegetarian substitute made without animal rennet. In supermarkets look for the 'parmesan style hard cheeses' which are suitable for vegetarians.