Rigatoni with Italian Eggplant

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 cups chopped onions
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups italian eggplant, diced to 1/2-inch pieces
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes, undrained
2/3 cup red wine
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary, crumbled
salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 pound dry rigatoni
grated romano cheese, to finish

Heat olive oil in a 3 quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic. Cook, stirring until softened, about 2 minutes. Add the eggplant and cook. Continue stirring until softened, about 3 more minutes.

Add tomatoes, with liquid, breaking them up with the back of spoon. Stir in wine, tomato paste, sugar, oregano, thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally.

Bring large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Cook pasta until al dente; drain. Toss pasta with sauce in pan over medium heat for about 2 minutes. Serve on a large platter and top with grated Romano cheese.

Yield: 4 to 6 servings



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