Spaghetti with Eggplant and Mozzarella
Mario Batali's Eggplant Long Island Style
- 1 Eggplant (sliced into 1/4-inch thick rounds)
- 3 Eggs (lightly beaten)
- 1/2 cup Instant Mashed Potatoes (Flakes)
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Kosher Salt
- freshly Ground Pepper
- 1 28- ounce can San Marzano Tomatoes
- 1/2 Yellow Onion (diced)
- 2 cloves Garlic (sliced)
- 2 Oil Packed Anchovy Filets (plus 1 tablespoon packing oil)
- 1 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
- 1/4 cup Red Pepper Jelly (divided)
- 1 pound Spaghettini
- 1/2 cup Mozzarella (small cubes)
- Basil leaves (torn; to garnish)
- Heat a few tablespoons of olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Arrange the beaten eggs and instant mashed potato flakes in 2 separate shallow dishes. Dredge the eggplant slices in the eggs and instant potatoes, shaking off excess after each step. Fry eggplant for 2 to 3 minutes per side, or until golden brown. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate to blot.
- In a large pot or small dutch oven over medium-high heat, heat a few tablespoons of olive oil and then sauté the onion until slightly softened, 1 to 2 minutes, and then add the garlic, anchovy, and san marzano tomatoes. Season with a pinch of red pepper flakes. Cook for 10 minutes, uncovered, stirring occasionally, allowing the flavors to come together.
- Bring a large pot of water up to a rolling boil. Season with salt, and boil pasta for 1 minute less than package instructions. Drain, retaining a cup of pasta cooking water.
- Heat another large sauté pan over medium-high heat (you can wipe the pan clean that you used for the eggplant) and add a few ladlefuls of the pasta sauce. Add the pasta and mozzarella and cook for a minute to bring the flavors together. Use an immersion blender to carefully puree the tomato sauce in the pot.
- Scoop a ladleful of the tomato sauce on a plate and spread to create a bed of sauce. Top with a slice of eggplant. Top with a twirl of spaghetti and basil. Add another layer of eggplant, pasta and basil and then top with the eggplant, a smear of pepper jelly and fresh sliced basil. Drizzle with olive oil and serve.