Pasta alla Norma Italian eggplant pasta
Food - Drink
In Sicily's Classic Pasta Alla Norma, Eggplant Is The Star
Each region of Italy has its own unique food, and Sicily is known for classics like cannoli, arancini, and pasta alla Norma, which relies on eggplant as its star ingredient.
Pasta alla Norma is a simple dish with tubular pasta, a tomato, basil, garlic sauce, and ricotta salata cheese, but its star ingredient, eggplant, makes it unique.
Eggplant was first brought to Sicily by conquering Arabs between the 9th and 10th centuries, and the ingredient quickly became a favorite as an alternative to meat.
In fact, pasta alla Norma is so prized in Sicilian culture that the dish takes its name from the operatic masterpiece, “Norma,” by Sicilian composer Vincenzo Bellini.
To replicate this culinary masterpiece, use mild Rosa Bianca eggplants, which are cut into strips or cubes, seasoned with coriander and salt, and fried in olive oil.
The eggplant is then added to a sauce made of garlic, crushed tomatoes, and basil, served with a tubular pasta that can hold the sauce, and finished with ricotta salata cheese.