So, this is pretty basic pasta dish but when you pair it with a vodka sauce it's fucking fantastic. Chunky, flavorful, healthy and very filling and the ingredients are so cheap and the dish lasts a couple of fat kids a few meals.
We go through this stuff.
Olive oil is going to be the tie-in ingredient. Cook the veggies in it and use it to keep the pasta from clumping together. I'm a big fan of this Spanish oil from Trader Joe's but any extra virgin olive oil will be good. Olive oil is classified in terms of virginity: extra virgin is the very first press of oil from the olives and is great for tasting (drizzled over veggies, in salads) while regular olive oil is not the first press and can be used for cooking. I only buy extra virgin, partially because I really like the taste and partially because I don't have room in my kitchen for a bunch of different cooking oils. But I seriously recommend finding one you like the taste of and using it in everything.
Chop your veggies! Cube eggplant into bite sized pieces and cut the asparagus into half inch sized sticks. Season and layer loosely in a pan on medium heat with a thin layer of olive oil.
Adds the crunch
I used to never be a big fan of asparagus but recently I've been in love with it. When it's fresh like this it's so tasty.
Cook the eggplant first to let the seasonings (your basic pepper, garlic, basil, whatever else you like) sink in. Wait until the eggplant is just about done before putting in the asparagus. Limp asparagus sucks.
Big ol' pot of pasta!
Boil water and cook your pasta! I said fusili because I like the spirals, but you could really use any pasta. Fusili will look the prettiest though. Drain the pasta once it's done to your liking and pour a few tablespoons of olive oil in the pan and stir to keep the pasta pieces from sticking together.
Add the vodka sauce to the veggie mix in the pan. Simmer on low for 10-15 minutes to let the flavors soak together. This will also finish cooking the asparagus.
Put it all together and top with cheese! Mozzarella, parmesan or whatever you want. I had the idea to add a can of diced tomatoes to the mix but forgot, so you could do that. This is a pretty decent way to get your carbs in, but it's also way healthy.