Home Breakfast Pasta alla Norma 1

Pasta alla Norma 1

Pasta alla Norma 1

We’re going again to Sicily! Pasta Alla Norma is a scrumptious Sicilian pasta dish with eggplant, marinara, and basil. I’m excited to introduce you to this dish as a result of its fully satisfying vegetarian dinner.

Should you get pleasure from eggplant Parmesan, you’re going to like pasta, Alla Norma. I’m craving a bowl as I kind.

Most pasta alla Norma recipes are made with fried eggplant, however, this recipe options roasted eggplant. Eggplant actually absorbs oil like a sponge, so this lightens up the dish. One other plus? Roasting eggplant is simpler and less messy.

I additional lightened this basic recipe through the use of extra eggplant and fewer pasta, so this dish gained’t put you to sleep. It’s good and saucy, simply the best way I prefer it.

I don’t converse Italian, so I first assumed that “norma” meant eggplant. Not the case! Norma is capitalized as a result of her being a woman. Or an opera, relying on the way you have a look at it.

Right here’s the backstory: Pasta Alla Norma comes from Catania, a metropolis on the jap coast of Sicily. Catania is the hometown of Vincenzo Bellini, an Italian opera composer who lived in the early 1800s. One of all Bellini’s most well-known operas, Norma, is called after its lead character.

Folklore has it that playwright Nino Martoglio, after his first chew of this pasta dish, exclaimed, “Chista è ‘na vera Norma!” (“It is a true Norma!”) That’s fairly a praise.


Pasta alla Norma

Pasta alla Norma Elements

Pasta Alla Norma is proof that straightforward elements can yield spectacular outcomes. This basic Italian dish is particularly applicable in late summertime or early fall when eggplant is in season. It’s so hearty that I’ll be having fun with it by means of the winter.

Marinara Sauce

You actually can’t beat my Super Simple Marinara Sauce, which comes along with minimal fuss. It’ll be prepared across the time the eggplant is completed roasting, and yields precisely the quantity of sauce you’ll want for this dish (two cups). Should you’d wish to simplify the recipe, you possibly can use a superb store-bought marinara. My favorite is Rao’s.


Search for two medium eggplants with the agency, shiny pores and skin, and no bruises. They need to really feel heavy for his or her measurement. We gained’t trouble salting the eggplant earlier than roasting—it’s actually pointless with trendy eggplants.

Further-Virgin Olive Oil

Any high-quality extra-virgin olive oil will do. Use an Italian selection if you wish to be as genuine as potential.


Use rigatoni, ziti, spaghetti, or any pasta alongside these strains. You’ll see rigatoni in these pictures, however, I’ve additionally actually loved spaghetti.

Contemporary Basil

Basil livens up this saucy meal. We’ll use a fairly beneficiant quantity, about 1/2 cup or a whole small store-bought container. It values it.

A Few Fundamental Spices

Freshly floor black pepper, dried oregano, and pink pepper flakes spherical out the flavors on this dish. Should you’re delicate to spice, go gentle on the pink pepper flakes or omit them fully.


True pasta Alla Norma is made with aged ricotta Salata, which is tough to seek out in America. For one thing pretty related, strive equal elements store-bought ricotta Salata and Parmesan.

Different solutions I’ve discovered online embody Grana Padano or mature Pecorino Romano (with or without some crumbled feta). All that mentioned, I don’t suppose you possibly can go incorrect with mozzarella.

Some recipes additionally embody dollops of ricotta, which might absolutely be tasty.

Should you’re following a dairy-free or vegan eating regimen, I imagine you’ll nonetheless love this dish without the cheese. Or, you possibly can end your bowls with a sprinkle of vegan Parmesan and maybe even a dollop of vegan sour cream rather than ricotta.

Find out how to Make Pasta alla Norma

This recipe is easy sufficient to tug off on a weeknight in case you begin an hour earlier than dinnertime. It requires a couple of easy elements and also you’ll get the dangle of it shortly.

Pour yourself a glass of Italian pink wine, maybe a Sangiovese, and profit from it!

You’ll discover the complete recipe beneath, however right here’s the gist:

1) Begin the marinara sauce.

That’s, assuming you’re going the homemade route. You actually gained imagine how shortly my marinara comes collectively!

2) Put together and roast the eggplant.

We’re going to observe Ottolenghi’s lead right here and use a vegetable peeler to shave off strips of eggplant peel to make it look quite zebra-like. In this manner, you continue to get a number of the good texture of the eggplant pores and skin, however, you don’t find yourself with distracting lengthy strips of it in your completed dish (the eggplant tends to disintegrate within the sauce, in a great way). Then, we’ll slice the eggplant into rounds, brush them with oil, and roast them till deeply golden.

3) Cook dinner the pasta in salted water.

Salting the water infuses your pasta with extra taste.

Attempt to bear in mind to order a number of the pasta cooking water earlier than draining it—the starch within the water helps unite the sauce with the pasta.

I sometimes scoop some right into a Pyrex glass measuring cup simply earlier than draining. (Should you neglect, as I typically do, no worries.)

4) Stir all of it collectively.

That is once we add the contemporary basil, a lot of the cheese (reserve some for garnish), and a few spices. Add salt to style, and your meal is able to serve. Buon appetito.

Extra Eggplant Recipes to Take pleasure in

As at all times, please let me understand how your pasta Alla Norma seems within the feedback! I really like listening to from you. Should you’re hungry for more pasta dishes, I’ve received you coated.

Pasta alla Norma


  • Creator: Cookie and Kate
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook dinner Time: 50 minutes
  • Whole Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Class: Entree
  • Technique: Roasted and stovetop
  • Delicacies: Sicilian
  • Eating regimen: Vegetarian

Pasta Alla Norma is a scrumptious Sicilian pasta dish with eggplant, marinara, and basil. This wonderful recipe options roasted eggplant, not fried! Recipe yields 4 entrée servings.SCALE1X2X3X


  • 1 batch Super Simple Marinara Sauce, or 2 cups (16 ounces) store-bought marinara
  • 2 medium eggplants (about 2 ¼ kilos complete) 
  • ¼ cup + 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼ teaspoon fantastic salt, extra to style
  • 8 ounces rigatoni, ziti or spaghetti
  • ½ cup chopped contemporary basil, plus a handful extra small basil leaves or torn leaves for garnish 
  • ½ to 1 teaspoon pink pepper flakes, to style (elective)
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¾ cup (1.5 ounces) finely grated ricotta salata and/or Parmesan cheese


  1. If making your personal marinara: Cook dinner the sauce per directions. If it’s accomplished cooking earlier than you’re able to assemble, cowl the pot and maintain it heat over very low warmth.
  2. Should you’re utilizing store-bought marinara, heat it in a pot over medium-low warmth when you cook dinner the pasta. 
  3. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 425 levels Fahrenheit with racks within the higher and decrease thirds of the oven. Line two giant, rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper for simple cleanup.  
  4. Use a vegetable peeler to shave off lengthy alternating strips of eggplant peel. The eggplants will look striped like zebras while you’re accomplished. Then slice the eggplants into ½-inch thick rounds, discarding the top items. 
  5. Place the eggplant on the lined baking sheets. Brush the rounds with olive oil on each side. Sprinkle the eggplant with the salt and loads of pepper. Roast till deeply golden and tender, about 35 to 45 minutes, flipping after 20 minutes. Put aside.
  6. Deliver a big pot of salted water to boil and cook dinner the pasta till al dente, in response to package deal instructions. Reserve some pasta cooking water earlier than draining (about ½ cup needs to be lots), then return the pasta to the pot.
  7. When the eggplant is completed and the marinara is completed cooking (or warmed by means of, if utilizing store-bought), gently stir the roasted eggplant into the sauce. Add the remaining 1 teaspoon olive oil, contemporary basil, pink pepper flakes (skip in case you don’t like spice, or load it up in case you do). Crush the dried oregano between your fingers as you drop it in.
  8. Add the pasta to the sauce with a pair tablespoons of the reserved pasta cooking water, and gently stir it in. Add about two-thirds of the cheese, reserving the remaining for garnish. Season to style with extra salt (I normally add ¼ teaspoon extra) and black pepper. You may add a bit extra of the reserved pasta cooking water to loosen up the sauce, if desired.
  9. Divide the pasta between 4 bowls. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on prime of the person servings, adopted by some further contemporary basil. For added richness, drizzle the servings calmly with olive oil. Take pleasure in! Leftover pasta will maintain properly within the fridge, coated, for 4 to five days.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here