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I love a good hidden veggie pasta, and this dish is no exception. Almost smoky (smoky would be awesome here), a little tart, a little silk – this one is good.

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan

Burnt Eggplant Pasta

2 small purple eggplants

Salt, pepper, neutral oil

2 Tablespoons neutral oil

1/2 yellow onion

3 cloves garlic

1 Tablespoon Thai roasted red chili paste

1.5 Tablespoons tamarind paste

1 Tablespoon pomegranate molasses

1/2 cup shelled unsalted pistachios

1/2 cup fresh parsley

1.5 cups cooked pasta

Lemon or sumac powder

Preheat your oven to 220C/400F and prepare a baking sheet with a silicone mat or tinfoil. Halve your eggplants lengthwise, score, dust with salt & pepper and sprinkle with neutral oil. Bake about 40 minutes, or until blackened but not turned into charcoal.

Pull and let sit to cool.

In a medium saucepan, sautee the onion and garlic (chopped) in 2 Tablespoons of oil until nicely browned. Hit with salt and pepper.

Scoop the eggplant guts into the onions and stir to combine.

Add the red chili paste, tamarind paste and pomegranate molasses. Stir to combine.

Chuck into the bowl of a food processor and whiz until mostly blended. Taste and add a bit more salt and pepper if needed.

Put back into the pan with the cooked pasta.

Chop the pistachios and parsley. Fold into the pasta mixture and serve topped with the lemon or sumac powder.

Serves 2 for dinner