Pasta del coinquilino Pugliese:
1/2 onion (pref. white)
2 cloves garlic
1/2 kilo cherry tomatoes
salt & pepper
smoked provolone or scamorza
Cut the aubergine into 1 inch cubes, salt & leave to rest for 20 minutes. Meanwhile chop the onion as finely as possible, and cut the garlic into 2 or 3 large pieces (you're going to fish them out afterwards). Fry the onion very gently in olive oil til is transparent, then add the cherry tomatoes, washed and chopped in half. Simmer gently for 15 minutes or so.
While it's simmering, rinse and dry off the aubergines. Fry the garlic pieces in a seperate pan, add the aubergine and gently cook til the aubergine has browned in places and has a lovely garlicky scent, then fish out the pieces of garlic and leave the pan on one side.
By now the tomatoes should be making a lovely rich sauce, with a fork carefully remove the tomato skins, and discard, leaving a delicious rich sugo. Taste and season with salt & a little black pepper. Put the water on to boil for the pasta. Shapes which hold sauce well are best for this, maybe fusilli, we had farfalle. Take the smoked cheese, chop into very small cubes till you have about 1 tablespoon of cubes per 2 people. Chuck the pasta in the boiling water. Then cut two or three very very thin slices of the cheese which will be used to garnish the dish.
When the pasta is almost ready put the cubes of smoked cheese into the pan with the aubergines and mix them in well. Then add the drained cooked pasta, and the tomato sauce on top. Mix well in the pan for a minute or two. Spoon into pasta bowls and lay a few shavings of the smoked cheese on the top of each portion. You don't need to add parmesan or pecorino here though, there's already enough going on.
Serve with some cheap and cheerful red wine. Tasty and a bit unusual.