Pasta with tomato sauce
Serves: 5
  • 1 x 500 gram box of pasta
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 large cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • handful of basil leaves, torn
  • 2 x 400 gram tins Italian tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon Maldon salt
  • pepper to taste
  • 1 small eggplant (aubergine sliced into rounds)
  • handful Kalamata olives, sliced
To serve:
  • parmesan cheese, grated
  • baby spinach or rocket (arugula) leaves
  1. Put a large saucepan of water on to boil. Once boiling cook pasta according to packet instructions.
  2. (If adding eggplant, heat a splash of olive oil in a large frying pan and fry the slices of eggplant until they are browned and creamy in texture. Remove to a plate.)
  3. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan and gently fry the garlic and half the torn basil leaves for a minute or so, until they become fragrant.
  4. Add the tins of tomatoes, and use a potato masher to break them up once they are in the pan.
  5. Add the balsamic vinegar, and salt and pepper. Bring to boil, then turn down to simmer gently. It is really important that the tomatoes don't thicken too much. It should be reasonably liquidy when it mixes with the pasta. Add a little water from the pasta pan if required.
  6. Check the seasoning. If the sauce tastes acidic, add extra salt (a little at a time).
  7. (Just before the pasta is cooked, chop the cooked eggplant into small squares and add them to the sauce, together with the sliced olives. Stir through and adjust seasoning as required.)
  8. Drain pasta once cooked, and return it to the same pot. Pour the tomato sauce over the pasta and stir through.
  9. Serve topped with grated parmesan and a handful or spinach or rocket leaves (if there are any in the bottom of the fridge).
Recipe by Villiers Brown at