Pasta Timballo Layered With Eggplant, Bolognese Ragu, Hardboiled Egg And Scamorza Cheese
- 1/4 cup bread crumbs
- 1 small eggplant, peeled and sliced thin (1/16-inch)
- 2 cups penne pasta cooked until al dente
- 1/4 cup sliced hardboiled egg
- 6 ounces bolognese ragu, recipe follows
- Fresh basil leaves, as much as you like
- 1/4 cup pecorino
- 2 ounces tomato sauce
- 1/2 cup scamorza cheese grated
CLASSIC BOLOGNESE RAGU:
To assemble, brush bottom of clay bowl* or oven-proof bowl with olive oil. Sprinkle bread crumbs evenly around surface. Place half eggplant strips in the clay all around circumference, with half laying over sides of clay. In a mixing bowl toss pasta with egg, bolognese, basil, and pecorino cheese together. Season with salt and pepper (you may add garlic here, red pepper flakes, etc). Place the mixture in the clay. Top with rest of the sliced eggplant and close top with the overhang of eggplant. Remember to start at the opening so each slice closes the other. Spread tomato sauce over the eggplant slices and then spread with grated scamorza cheese. Lightly oil the top. Bake in the oven at 325 degrees F for about 1 hour.
*If using a clay bowl do not preheat oven. Start in a cold oven. If using an oven-proof bowl preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
Cook the pancetta in a heavy bottom pan over medium-low heat for 2 to 3 minutes, fat should begin to render Add the chopped vegetables and cook 3 minutes until onion becomes tender and vegetables wilting.
Add the ground meat, and turn heat to medium. Brown the meat, cooking 5 to 6 minutes. Stir in the wine and tomato paste. Reduce heat to low, cook 1 1/2 hours, stirring continuously.
Check for seasoning and adjust with salt and pepper as necessary.