Spicy tomato pasta

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Slow-cooked pasta is not really heard of but it’s a fantastic way to create a much loved dish. Chilli and cloves flavour the entire dish and the crumbled ricotta really is the cherry on top.

  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1 medium brown onion, finely chopped
  • 1 whole fresh red chilli, small, finely chopped
  • 2 clove(s) fresh garlic, crushed
  • 400 g canned diced tomatoes
  • 200 g fresh eggplant, baby, chopped
  • 250 g cherry tomato
  • 1 1/2 cup(s) Vegetable stock, liquid, salt-reduced, (375ml)
  • 1 tbs red wine vinegar
  • 160 g pasta, penne
  • 2 tbs fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 2 tbs fresh basil, chopped, plus extra whole leaves
  • 1 cup(s) reduced-fat ricotta cheese, (240g)

Heat oil in a large non-stick frying pan over high heat. Cook onion, stirring, for 5 minutes or until softened. Add chilli and garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until fragrant

Add diced tomatoes, eggplant, cherry tomatoes, stock and vinegar and bring to the boil. Transfer to a 4.5 litre (18-cup) slow cooker.

Cook, covered, on low for 3 hours (or high for 1 1/2 hours). Add pasta and cook, covered, on high for 40–45 minutes or until pasta is tender. Stir in parsley and basil. Season with salt and pepper. Serve sprinkled with ricotta and extra basil.

SERVING SUGGESTION: Salad of butter lettuce leaves and Lebanese cucumber ribbons. TIP: ON THE STOVETOP If you don’t have a slow cooker, cook sauce in a deep frying pan over low heat for 25 minutes or until thickened. Cook pasta in a saucepan of salted boiling water following packet instructions or until tender. Drain, then toss through sauce.

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