Roasting sweetens the flavor of the eggplant, zucchini and onion, creating a rich companion to the pasta. The dish needs just a little olive oil and Parmesan to bring it all together. Try it with wines that complement the vegetables, such as these three.
Make this: Fettuccine with Roasted Vegetables
Cut 1 eggplant and 3 small zucchini into 2-inch pieces. Place on a baking sheet with 3 cloves garlic, minced, and 1 large onion, sliced; toss with 3 tablespoons olive oil to coat. Season with salt. Bake at 425 degrees, tossing once during baking, until vegetables have softened, about 15 minutes. Add 1 can (14 1/2 ounces) crushed tomatoes; roast 10 minutes. Meanwhile, cook 1 pound fettuccine in plenty of well-salted boiling water until al dente; drain. Toss vegetables with pasta. Top with 1/2 cup grated Parmesan. Makes: 6 servings
Recipe by Donna Pierce
Pairings by sommelier Arthur Hon of Sepia, as told to Michael Austin:
2013 Niepoort Redoma Branco, Douro, Portugal: The key to pairing wine with this dish is to let the flavors of the roasted vegetables shine without putting too much emphasis on any single flavor. This pleasing, well-structured white is a go-to, all-purpose gem. Its bright, citrus-driven acidity will match well with the equally vibrant tomato background of the dish, and the creamy texture of the wine will also hold its weight against the Parmesan cheese.
2013 Palmina Arneis, Little Rascal, Honea Vineyard, Santa Ynez Valley, Calif.: Steve Clifton, one of Santa Barbara County’s iconic winemakers, has a singular vision that results in surprising expressions of underappreciated Italian grape varieties. This arneis has the lifting acidity and appropriate texture to gently cradle the two counterpoints of tomato and Parmesan in this recipe. Clifton’s hands-off yet focused winemaking will complement the rustic, comforting nature of the dish.
2014 Luigi Giordano Barbera d’Alba, Vigneto Buschet, Piedmont, Italy: This classic red has more rustic charm and less intensity than the typical rendition of the well-known barbera grape variety. While it lacks the density and flesh of your average barbera d’Alba, it more than makes up for it with savory red, fruit-driven flavors that will pair beautifully with the crushed tomatoes and won’t overpower the dish with too much tannin.
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