Eggplant Ragu with Pappardelle and Fresh Ricotta

The eggplant is so meaty and rich, this vegetarian recipe tastes plenty decadent and delicious without any actual meat at all. Make your own pasta if you’d like, or user pappardelle from the store for a quick alternative. Either way, you’ll be happy with these complex textures and flavors.

Eggplant Ragu with Fresh Ricotta
Eggplant Ragu with Fresh Ricotta

This recipe comes from the talented Michael Natkin’s Herbivoracious cookbook – which is all vegetarian, all delicious.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. (Make your own pasta in advance, or use store-bought. Either will be lovely.)

Saute 1 finely diced red onion and 6 cloves diced garlic in olive oil, over medium-high heat. Peel and cut two large eggplants into 1-inch cubes. Add the eggplant, 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes and a pinch of salt. Lower the heat to medium and cook and stir occasionally, until the eggplant is nearly tender – about 10 minutes.

Thinly slice 1 red bell pepper and add, cooking two more minutes. Add 1 cup dry red wine, scraping up any brown bits. Keep cooking until the eggplant is very tender – about 2 more minutes. Then turn the heat to very low.

We made homemade pasta. Drop storebought in the water now, or follow our recipe for homemade.

Divide the pasta among four bowls. Divide 1 1/2 cups of ricotta – in little dollops – between four bowls. Then top with the ragu and chopped parsley, grated parmesan, orange zest and black pepper. (That delicious looking bread is from the (Nearly) No-Knead Bread With Lager recipe.)

Eggplant Ragu with Fresh Ricotta
Eggplant Ragu with Fresh Ricotta


  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 red onion, finely diced
  • 6 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
  • 2 large eggplants, peeled and cut into 1″ cubes
  • 1/2 tsp hot red pepper flakes
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • cup of dry red wine
  • 1 lb pasta (papardelle or homemade)
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh ricotta
  • minced fresh flat leaf parsley
  • freshly grated parmesan
  • zest of 1 orange
  • freshly ground black pepper

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Seattle Foodshed

Gardening, foraging, exploring and cooking. Time for a delicious adventure.

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