Tomato-basil sauce finds the perfect thing to cling to: bucatini pasta, which is like thick and chewy spaghetti but with a hollow center. The eggplant and zucchini get a special salt treatment before cooking-- drawing out their moisture so they get crisp and golden in the hot olive oil. The final touch on this Naples-inspired dish: a creamy dollop of ricotta.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Whisk together 1 cup of the tomato sauce with 2 tablespoons oil in a small bowl; set aside. Season the eggplant and zucchini generously with salt and let sit in a colander for 15 minutes. Rinse with cold water and pat dry with a paper towel.
Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons oil with the red pepper flakes and garlic in a large skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering but not smoking. Add the vegetables and cook, tossing occasionally, until tender, golden and crisp, about 5 minutes.
Cook the pasta according to the package directions; drain, reserving 1/2 cup pasta water. Return the pasta to the pot along with the pasta water and remaining tomato sauce. Toss to coat and divide among 6 bowls. Top with the vegetables, reserved tomato sauce mixture, ricotta and basil.
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