Monday, June 25, 2012

Loaded Veggie Pasta Sauce – Slow Cooker Style

A couple weeks ago I wrote about slow cooking in the summertime. Well, I’m at it again, this time with eggplant. I’d read somewhere that when slow-cooked, eggplant gives sauces or stews a really great texture, and it’s true! I found a recipe for Loaded Veggie Pasta Sauce from a user on justapinch.com that included two eggplants, so I gave it a try. It was a tomato-based sauce, and when slow-cooked, the eggplant kind of dissolved in the stew, adding heft and bulk to the tomato sauce without making it soupy or too heavy. The eggplant, plus the combo of peppers, onions, red pepper flakes and a bit of brown sugar, made this sauce a must-try!

I assembled it all in the morning, then enjoyed it over pasta with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese and fresh chopped parsley for dinner. There is something so nice to coming home from work to a meal that’s already prepared!

The next night I sauteed some bacon and cabbage in a small, non-stick skillet, then added several spoonfulls of the tomato sauce. I made indentation with a spoon, then nestled two eggs into it, topped it with mozzarella and finished it in the oven. Tomorrow I plan to smear some rosemary bread we had left over from a weekend dinner with the sauce, then top it with cheese and grilled veggies. The sauce is thick enough to hold together for something like that.

This recipe makes a huge batch so be prepared to eat it for several dinners or freeze half. Enjoy!

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Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 9-10 hours

The fire-roasted tomatoes add great flavor to this sauce, so really try to use those if you can find them. This recipe makes a lot, so plan to freeze some or use for a lasagna or two.

Ingredients:

6 c eggplant, peeled & diced small (about 2 medium eggplants)
1 green pepper, diced
1 red pepper, diced
1/2 sweet onion, diced
8 cloves garlic, minced
4 cans (14.5 oz. each) fire-roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
6 oz. tomato paste
2 tbsp light brown sugar, packed
2 tbsp italian seasoning
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a slow cooker and mix well. Cook on low, 9-10 hours. Enjoy!

Adapted from Teresa Jacobson, Jacksonville, FL, from www.justapinch.com.

 

 

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