Recipe Detail Eggplant antipasto

Eggplant antipasto

Caponata should taste agro dolce, which means slightly sweet and slightly sour. It makes a delicious accompaniment to grilled meat or fish and may be prepared up to one week in advance. Cover and store in the refrigerator, then return to room temperature or reheat before serving.



1. Warm 1/2 cup of the olive oil in a large skillet set over medium-high heat. Add the cubed eggplant and cook until lightly browned but still firm, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a wide, deep saucepan or flameproof casserole and set aside.

2. Warm the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in the skillet. Stir in the onions and cook until wilted, about 4 minutes. Stir in the celery and then the tomatoes, crushing them with your hands or the back of a slotted spoon as you add them to the pan. Simmer over medium-low heat until the tomatoes begin to sweeten but the celery is still crisp, about 15 minutes. Stir in the capers and pine nuts. Transfer this vegetable mixture to the casserole with the eggplant.

3. In a small saucepan set over low heat, stir the sugar and vinegar. Warm until the sugar dissolves. Stir into the eggplant mixture in the casserole. Season with salt and pepper.

4. Cover the casserole and simmer over low heat, stirring frequently, until the tomatoes are cooked and the vegetables are tender but not mushy, 15 to 20 minutes. Serve the caponata warm or at room temperature.


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