Doppiette di aubergine à la messina: the recipe for a typical Sicilian dish

  • Big eggplant

  • Spaghetti
    250 grams
    • 365 kcal

  • Parmesan cheese

    100 grams
    • 899 kcal
  • Tomato puree
    600 grams
    • 21 kcal

  • Onion
    • 29 kcal

  • Basil

    1 tuft
    • 15 kcal
  • ricotta salata
    to taste

  • Peanut oil
    to taste
    • 0 kcal

  • Extra virgin olive oil

    to taste
    • 0 kcal
  • salt
    to taste
    • 21 kcal

Calories refer to 100 grams of product

the eggplant doublets from Messina I am a first course typical of Sicilian cuisine, in particular the city of Messina. These are delicious timballs that revisit one of the emblematic recipes of this region: the famous pasta alla Norma. A small nest of spaghetti, seasoned with tomato sauce and Parmesan cheese, is enclosed between two slices of fried eggplant, then baked with grated salted ricotta: the result is a delicious stringy pasta sandwich, perfect for Sunday lunch in the family or to serve as a treat food to eat with your fingers on the occasion of an aperitif or a party buffet. Find out how to do them by following our simple step-by-step instructions.

How to prepare eggplant doublets from Messina

Eggplant doublets Messina style

Wash the eggplant, peel it and cut it into fairly thin slices (1).

Eggplant doublets Messina style

Fry the eggplants in very hot seed oil (2) and, once golden, drain them and let them dry on absorbent paper.

Eggplant doublets Messina style

Chop the onion and brown it in a saucepan with a drizzle of oil (3).

Eggplant doublets Messina style

Pour in the tomato paste, salt (4) and let reduce for about 20 minutes. Flavor the sauce with a few basil leaves.

Eggplant doublets Messina style

Boil the pasta in boiling, lightly salted water; drain it al dente and season with three quarters of the sauce and 60 g of grated Parmesan (5).

Eggplant doublets Messina style

Place a few slices of eggplant at the bottom of an ovenproof dish; Using a ladle, roll a fork of spaghetti until you get a sort of nest, then place it on each slice of eggplant (6).

Eggplant doublets Messina style

Cover with another slice of eggplant then complete with a spoonful of sauce (7).

Eggplant doublets Messina style

Sprinkle with the rest of the grated Parmesan (8) and bake at 200 ° C for about 10 minutes.

Eggplant doublets Messina style

After cooking time, remove the eggplant doublets from the oven and garnish with grated ricotta salata and a fresh basil leaf (9).

Eggplant doublets Messina style

Serve and serve (10).


You can use the eggplant variety you prefer: black, purple or white. To get rid of any bitter aftertaste, you can also cut them into slices, transfer them to a colander, sprinkle them with a pinch of coarse salt and let them stand for at least half an hour, so that they lose some of the salt. vegetation water.

For the dressing, you can use the Tomato puree, peeled tomatoes, for a more rustic consistency, or fresh datterini tomatoes with which to make a fresh and quick sauce. If you want to remove any acidity from the tomato, you can add a pinch of sugar, according to Sicilian tradition.

If you prefer, instead of doing doublets, you can do Rollers: place a small portion of spaghetti on each eggplant slice, then roll it up and stop it with a wooden toothpick. Sprinkle with tomato sauce and Parmesan cheese and bake for the time indicated in the recipe.

If you want a lighter dish, you can avoid frying the eggplants: heat a plate on the fire, then arrange the eggplants, brush them lightly with a drizzle of oil and grill them on both sides.

If you liked this recipe, also try the eggplant rolls with rice.


Eggplant doublets with messina can be stored fridge, inside a special airtight container, for maximum 1-2 days. When ready to eat, reheat them in the oven until the cheese is melted.