Pasta alla Norma a dish of Sicilian origin now a must of Italian Cuisine

norma1gr

Pasta alla Norma is a first course of Sicilian origin, a specialty of Catania paying homage to the most beautiful and famous opera of Vincenzo Bellini by Catania:  Norma.
Pasta alla Norma is a dish prepared with a few simple ingredients that have to be of the highest quality.

Ingredients notrma4

  • 360 gr. striped penne
  • 600 gr. plum tomatoes (the ones to make the sauce)
  • 1 large eggplant
  • salted ricotta cheese to grate or fresh ricotta cheese
  • basil
  • 1 clove garlic
  • extra virgin olive oil

Preparation

– Cut the eggplant into slices 1 cm thick and arrange in layers in a colander with a bit ‘of salt.

norma5– Leave them for an hour, with a weight on top to drain water.

– Prepare the sauce by passing tomatoes in a vegetable mill.

– Then put the garlic in a saucepan with a little extra virgin olive oil and let it very slightly brown.

– Add the tomato puree, a few leaves of basil, a bit of salt and cook for about 15 minutes.

– Fry the slices of eggplant in plenty of oil and then wipe the excess oil with paper towels.

ricotta8– Keep aside 4 slices to decorate the dishes and cut the others into strips.

– Add the cut eggplant into the pot of tomato sauce.

РThen put pasta in the boiling water and wait for it to be cooked. Drain and put it for a few seconds  in the pots of the sauce.

– Pour the pasta on plates, put over the entire slice of eggplant and sprinkle with plenty of grated salted or fresh ricotta cheese.

Note: it is possible to use the sauce with different kind of pasta like spaghetti, tortiglioni and so on.

Where to eat and stay in Sicily.

norma3norma6