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Penne Alla Norma

June 8, 2010

I got this recipe from It’s simple, healthy, meat-free and delicious!  I didn’t have fresh basil, egg plant and ricotta cheese on hand. So I skipped the eggplant and added dried basil and sprinkled Parmesan cheese on top instead. It’s a good meal idea whether you want to follow it exactly or want to adjust it according to what you have on hand!

I want to cut  my meat in-take. I was promoting the meat-free Monday campaign in my previous posts. But that didn’t work well for me, I always forget to not eat meat on Monday. But it’s easier to just cut meat down in general. When you go grocery shopping, buy more non-meat ingredients for dishes like this one and just try to minimize carnivorous meals on your menu.

Penne Alla Norma

Serves 4 to 6

  • 1 pound penne rigate
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 large eggplant, cut into 3/4-inch chunks
  • 1 1/2 pounds plum tomatoes, cored and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup torn fresh basil, plus more for garnish
  • 3/4 cup ricotta cheese

Here are the pictures to illustrate the steps. I adjusted the amount of each ingredient, as I was only serving the hubby and myself 🙂 Don’t forget to precook your penne.

Heat olive oil and stir in onion, garlic and crushed red pepper flakes. Cooking them in low heat

until softened.

Add tomatoes, tomato past and water. Cook until softened.

Toss sauce and basil with precooked penne. Reheat if necessary

And Voila! Enjoy your meat-free meal!!!

***Please note that these pictures illustrate the recipe after my adjustments (no eggplant, no ricotta cheese, no fresh basil). Here is the original Penne Alla Norma Recipe.

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