The secret of pasta alla norma

I don’t exactly love eggplant. I more tolerate it than like it. But somehow I love pasta alla norma—eggplant, tomatoes, olives and capers. Requested as the final meal by the Royal Indian Mounted Food Police before his departure for Belgium, home of Indian food, I made it and retired the coffee filters I used to absorb the moisture from the eggplant in the microwave. It’s a good trick. The eggplant doesn’t disintegrate quite as easily once it’s been microwaved for 10 minutes (with a rest at 5 to move things around). And they’re microwaved on coffee filters.

I’m not sure why they need to be coffee filters as opposed to say, paper towel, but Cook’s Complicated, er, Illustrated is very explicit about it. I’ve used these for at least 2 years. They looked it and have been retired. I’m not sure if they feel bad about not having achieved their goal in life, filtering coffee, but they had a good run.

The meal was excellent.

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