Eggplant Parm Ravioli with Vodka Sauce

Source: Eggplant Parm Ravioli from Rachael Ray and Eggplant-filled Ravioli with Tomato Cream Sauce from Bon Appetit
adapted by

1 eggplant, peeled and chopped in chunks
3 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
Salt and pepper
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup plus 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup plain dried breadcrumbs
splash of white wine, I used Sauvignon Blanc
1 quart vodka sauce (recipe below or use your favorite jarred sauce!)
1 package egg roll or won ton wrappers (I used won ton wrappers, Nasoya brand)

fresh basil, for garnish
1/2 cup warm water

Using a food processor, finely chop the eggplant and garlic cloves. In a large nonstick skillet, heat 1½ tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the eggplant and garlic, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring, until browned, about 10 minutes. Add the wine, and cook that down for another couple of minutes. Stir in the bread crumbs and cook for another few minutes. Check for seasoning. Stir in the mozzarella and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. When it's all melted together, transfer to a bowl.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Fill each wrapper with 1 rounded tablespoon of the eggplant mixture; moisten the edges with water and fold in half, or for a larger ravioli, put 1 1/2 tablespoons eggplant mixture in the middle of one wrapper, moisten the edge and top with another wrapper, pressing the edges to seal. Working in 2 batches, cook the ravioli until tender, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the ravioli to plates or use one bowl, top with vodka sauce, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and fresh basil and serve .

Note: You can freeze the uncooked ravioli, separately on a baking sheet, when frozen put them in a ziploc freezer bag. When you want to use them, do not thaw.

Vodka Sauce:
Source: Lidia's Italian-American Kitchen by Lidia Bastianich

1 35-ounce can Italian plum tomatoes (preferably San Marzano) with their liquid
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
10 cloves garlic, peeled (I use a lot less, maybe 2-3)
crushed hot red pepper (to taste) (I used about 2 pinches)
1/4 cup vodka
1/2 cup heavy cream (I use less, a bout 1/3)
2 tablespoons butter or olive oil for finishing the sauce (optional)
2 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
3/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Pour the tomatoes and their liquid into the work bowl of a food processor. Using quick on/off pulses, process the tomatoes just until they are finely chopped. (Longer processing will aerate the tomatoes, turning them pink.)

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Whack the garlic cloves with the side of a knife and add them to the hot oil. Cook, shaking the skillet, until the garlic is lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Lower the work bowl with the tomatoes close to the skillet and carefully (they'll splatter) slide the tomatoes into the pan. Bring to a boil, season with salt and with crushed red pepper to taste (you can always add more it needed!) and boil about 2 minutes. Pour in the vodka, lower the heat so the sauce is at a lively simmer, and simmer for a few minutes.

Take the garlic cloves out of the sauce and pour in the cream. Add the 2 tablespoons butter or oil, if using, and carefully swirl the skillet to incorporate into the sauce. Check the seasoning, adding salt and red pepper if necessary. Simmer until the sauce is reduced a bit.

Remove the pot from the heat, sprinkle a little cheese in the sauce and stir. Serve immediately, serve with additional cheese if you like.

*My note - Sometimes I add a little pancetta or prosciutto, about 1/4 lb. sliced thin and cut into 1/2-inch pieces, to the sauce. Saute it with the garlic.