Recipe by Manami
At New York City's A Voce, Missy Robbins makes this elegant, decadent pasta dish with burrata, the creamy cow's-milk cheese from Italy. She says, "I absolutely love burrata, but this recipe also includes my trifecta of favorite ingredients: marjoram, lemon and chiles." Best New Chef 2010: Missy Robbins - F&W Magazine, July 2010 publication :) Robbins likes using the chile peppers in olive oil from BuonItalia (buonitalia.com). You can also use pickled cherry peppers.Staff favorite - vegetarian dish! From Best New Chefs and Their Simplest Recipes, Published July 2010 ;)
- 4 large Japanese eggplants, halved lengthwise (1 1/2 pounds total)
- 1⁄4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
- kosher salt
- 1⁄3 cup red wine vinegar
- 2 large garlic cloves, very thinly shaved (preferably on a Microplane slicer)
- 3 marjoram, sprigs plus 1 tablespoon marjoram leaves
- 1⁄2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 3⁄4 lb orecchiette
- 2 tablespoons freshly grated pecorino cheese
- 1 tablespoon chopped flat leaf parsley
- 1⁄2 lb burrata cheese, halved, creamy filling scooped out (reserve the firmer exterior for another use)
- 1 coarsely grated lemon, zest of
- 2 oil-packed red chilies, seeded and cut into thin strips
Directions See How It's Made
- Light a grill or preheat a grill pan.
- Brush the cut sides of the halved eggplants with olive oil and season with salt; grill the eggplants cut side down over moderate heat until lightly charred, about 4 minutes.
- Turn and continue grilling until just browned and cooked through, about 2 minutes longer.
- Let cool; dice the eggplants and transfer to a bowl.
- Pour the vinegar over the eggplant and toss well.
- In a small saucepan, combine the 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon of olive oil with the garlic, marjoram sprigs, crushed red pepper and 2 teaspoons of kosher salt.
- Bring the oil to a simmer, then pour it over the eggplant and toss; let stand for 1 hour.
- Discard the marjoram sprigs.
- In a pot of boiling salted water, cook the orecchiette until al dente.
- Drain the pasta, reserving 3/4 cup of the cooking water.
- Add the eggplant to the pot and cook over moderate heat, stirring lightly, until hot, about 30 seconds.
- Add the orecchiette and the reserved cooking water and cook, tossing, for about 30 seconds.
- Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the pecorino and parsley.
- Spoon the pasta into bowls.
- Dot the pasta with the creamy burrata filling.
- Garnish with the lemon zest, chile strips and marjoram leaves and serve.
- Rich, spicy dishes like this pasta will overwhelm reds that don't have equally robust flavors. A good place to find these kinds of reds is Italy's central Abruzzo region, which produces lush, berry-packed wines from the Montepulciano grape. Try the peppery 2007 Nicodemi Notari Montepulciano d'Abruzzo or the smooth 2006 Valle Reale Montepulciano d'Abruzzo.