Thursday, August 27, 2009

Dinner on the Cheap

I get paid once a month so you can imagine by the end of the month, my finances are looking grim. It's nice to see a bit lump of money in the bank when that check deposits but inevitably, I'm seeing two digits by the end of the month :)

This was another meal that was thrown together with ingredients I had on hand. I met my friend Christina the other day and she was saying that because she doesn't eat "sides" all of her food groups need to be in one dish. This was one of those!


The rest of my mom's marinarasauce (about 3/4 of the jar was left)
2 zuchinnis
1 eggplant
1 can of pinto beans
2 Tablespoons olive oil
Campanelle pasta
1 Tablespoon of cumin (very key!)
1/2 Tablespoon crushed red pepper

As you can see, there is a red pepper in the above picture but I didn't actually end up using it because once I threw everything in the pan, I realized there was just too much in there. But I did roast it before I aborted mission.

All you do is cut in half and take out all of the seeds.

Put over the burner (medium heat) for about 4 minutes on each side, depending on how charred you want it.

It gets soft and the sweetness of the pepper comes out. Yum! I ended up putting the pasta sauce over these roasted peppers and eating it with a knife and fork the next day.

I found this box in my pantry:

Goodness knows how longs it's been there but because the pasta was so hearty with lots of big ol' chunks of veggies, it was the perfect size for this dish.

I read in one of my magazines that male eggplants tend to have fewer seeds, and are therefore less bitter than female eggplants. To figure out whether it's male or female, look at the indentation at bottom. If it's deep and shaped like a dash, it's a female. If it's shallow and round, it's a male. Wasn't quite sure what this was (I was definitely hoping for a male)


It was! Less seeds! Yay!!!


Chop up zucchini and eggplant into bite-sized pieces. Saute zucchini first since they're a bit firmer and then add in eggplant.

Add pasta sauce and beans and season with cumin and red pepper.

When I first threw everything in the pan, I was worried that it wasn't really pasta-y since there seemed to be disproportionate amount of veggies and sauce...

But once I left it simmering about about 25 minutes, the juices from the eggplant and zucchini came out and made it perfect!


Easy and simple as usual!!!



  1. Oooh, delish-looking!!!

  2. YUM! I always leave your blog suddenly hungry!

    "If it's shallow and round, it's a male"
    lol. I had no idea Eggplant was gendered.
    I want to make this dish.