Baked rigatoni with eggplant

Eggplant adds a lovely flavour and texture to this hearty vegetarian pasta dish that is topped with a crisp layer of breadcrumbs and parmesan. The rich tomato sauce could be made in advance, then the dish can be quickly assembled and baked when you wish. Serve with a green side salad.

Baked rigatoni with eggplant


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 4 tablespoons red wine
  • 2 cans chopped tomatoes, about 400 g each
  • 5 sun–dried tomatoes packed in oil, about 50 g in total, drained and chopped
  • 1 eggplant, cut into 1 cm cubes
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
  • 250 g rigatoni or other chunky pasta tube shapes, such as penne
  • salt and pepper
  • ⅓ cup (25 g) fresh wholemeal breadcrumbs
  • ⅓ cup (35 g) freshly grated parmesan


  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan, add the onion and cook gently for 4–5 minutes, stirring frequently, until it has softened and turned lightly golden.
  2. Add the garlic and cook gently for a further 1–2 minutes.
  3. Pour in the wine and allow it to bubble for a few minutes, then add the canned tomatoes, the sun–dried tomatoes, eggplant and oregano.
  4. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat, cover and simmer gently for 15–20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pan of boiling water for 10–12 minutes, or according to the packet instructions, until al dente.
  6. Drain well.
  7. Preheat the oven to 200°C.
  8. Season the tomato sauce with salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Tip the cooked pasta into a large, lightly greased ovenproof dish.
  10. Pour over the sauce and mix well together so that all the pasta is coated.
  11. Combine the breadcrumbs and parmesan in a bowl, and sprinkle this mixture evenly over the top of the pasta.
  12. Bake for 15–20 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbling and the top is golden brown and crisp.
  13. Serve hot.

Serves 4
Preparation: 10 minutes
Cooking: about 50 minutes


Light bites & lunches

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