Eggplant Marinara

Eggplant helps thicken this sauce and adds nutrition but no strong eggplant flavor. This is one of my favorite ways to use summer tomatoes, either fresh or from the freezer, but you can use canned tomatoes. If you have fresh herbs, by all means substitute 1 1/2 tsp of mixed chopped herbs for the Italian seasoning.

1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup onion, diced
1 tsp roasted garlic
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 pound eggplant, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 cup tomato paste, double concentrated, in a tube
1/2 cup red wine
2 cups freezer tomatoes, thawed (or a 15 oz. can)
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp sugar

1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, cook the onion until softened. Smash the roasted garlic with a fork and add to the onions. Cook one minute more. Sprinkle with the kosher salt.
2. Stir in the eggplant along with 2 Tbsp. of water. Cover and reduce heat to medium low. Cook, stirring frequently to prevent sticking, until very soft.
3. Push the eggplant mixture to the outer edges of the pan. Sprinkle the red pepper flakes in the center of the pan, then add the tomato paste. Allow the paste to toast for a minute or so, then stir to combine with the eggplant. Add the wine and again raise the heat to medium. Bring to a boil for a minute or two. Add the tomatoes, Italian seasoning, and sugar.
4. When the sauce comes to a boil, again cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer, stirring often, for at least 30 min. or until as thick as you like.

Servings: 4

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