Sausage Pasta with Eggplant Cream
An alternate title for this post could have been “Sausage Pasta with Eggplant Cream AKA The Best Thing That Could Ever Happen to Fusilli and Your Tummy”. Is that even funny? Because I’m laughing hard behind my screen right now. Yes, for real. Oh how I am excited to share this recipe with you! Please, please do not run away because you don’t like eggplant. See, this eggplant cream is exactly what you’ve always wanted to toss your pasta with. You won’t even notice it’s eggplant. It’s just SUPER CREAMY. Thick and creamy pasta sauce. And oh so very tasty. With no cream at all, of course. You didn’t think I would serve you something with heavy cream and all, did you? No, this cream is mostly…sneaky veggies! Hurray! Plus the usual basil, but do I need to mention this one each time I’m using it? ’cause I really feel I’m repeating myself a little too much here.
Ok the truth is, this eggplant cream is not supposed to be a pasta sauce. It’s actually a middle-eastern eggplant dip, at the crossroads of baba ghanoush and mutabal. But who cares as long as it’s delicious as a pasta sauce too? That’s actually a good thing if you ask me, because it means that you can use it for your new favorite pasta recipe and then dig in the leftovers with pita chips, celery, bell pepper…or any veggie you like! Yay for double purpose sauce!
Nutrition facts for the pasta dish
Cal: 397 - Protein: 13.4g - Fat: 23g - Carbs: 33g - Fiber: 3.2g - Sugar: 4.2g
WW Old Points: 8 pts - Points+: 8 pts
Nutrition facts for 1.5 tablespoons (= one serving) of eggplant cream
Cal: 32 - Protein: 0.7g - Fat: 2g - Carbs: 3.5g - Fiber: 1.7g - Sugar: 2g
- 2 medium eggplants (avoid the large ones, they are full of bitter seeds)
- Olive oil spray
- 1 small garlic clove
- 20 large fresh basil leaves (a big handful)
- 1/2 tbsp tahini
- the juice of one lemon
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 4 seasoned sausages, casing removed (I used Coles herb & garlic beef sausages)
- 4 cup fusilli pasta (spiral-shaped pasta)
- 1/3 cup eggplant cream
- shredded parmesan (optional - not included in nutrition facts)
- sweet paprika (for serving, optional)
- Start by making the eggplant cream. You can make it up to three days before and store it in the fridge. Preheat the oven to 350F/180C.
- Generously pierce eggplants with a fork and spray them with olive oil. Bake for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and let them sit for 20 minutes. Cut them in half and spoon the fresh out.
- Add all the eggplant cream ingredients in your blender or food processor (including eggplant flesh) and process until very smooth. Test for salt and pepper and adjust if needed. Transfer to a container and set aside.
- In a medium pan, bring some water to a boil and cook pasta according to package directions.
- While pasta is cooking, heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add sausage meat and break it into small chunks. Cook sausage for about 5 to 8 minutes or until cooked through. Turn off the heat and drain fat if any (but keep the sausage in the skillet).
- Drain pasta and transfer to the warm skillet. Add 1/3 cup eggplant cream and toss well to cover pasta and sausage. Serve, sprinkle with sweet paprika and top with shredded parmesan.
If you're planning to make this recipe on a busy night, you can make the eggplant cream a few days ahead. It keeps well in the fridge.
The recipe for the eggplant cream makes about 1 1/2 cups. You can use the leftovers as a dip, a spread or to toss with some meat and veggies!