Preheat the oven to fan
140C/conventional 160C/gas 3.
Halve the tomatoes through their
equator, rather than their core.
Stand them cut-side up on a
shallow baking tray (I use a nonstick
Swiss roll tin). Scatter a little
salt, pepper and sugar over the cut
surfaces and drizzle with extra
virgin olive oil. Roast for 45 minutes.
Meanwhile, slice the aubergine
into rounds, brush both sides with
oil and spread out in one layer on
another tray. After the tomatoes
have been roasting for 45 minutes,
put the aubergines in with them
and roast for another 45 minutes.
Towards the end of the time, cook
the pasta in plenty of gently boiling
well-salted water until nearly al
dente – it should be undercooked
because it finishes off in the oven.
Drain well and tip into a large bowl.
Have ready 4 tbsp of extra virgin
olive oil mixed with the crushed
garlic and chopped olives. Toss the
oil mixture through the pasta and
turn half of it into a 2-21⁄2 litre
Remove the tomatoes and
aubergines from the oven.
(You can prepare them up to 24
Turn up the oven to fan
180C/conventional 200C/gas 6.
Scatter half the tomatoes and their
juices over the pasta in the dish.
Roughly tear the basil leaves and
scatter on top. Drain the mozzarella,
pat dry with kitchen paper, then
slice very thinly. Lay two-thirds of
the slices over the tomatoes. Grind
black pepper over, and scatter over
the aubergine. Add the rest of the
pasta, top with the remaining
tomatoes and mozzarella and then
the parmesan. (Can be made up to
here 3-4 hours in advance). Bake
for 20-25 minutes, until piping hot
and the top is extra crusty. Serve
hot with a sprinkle of basil and