Total Time
Prep 2 hrs
Cook 1 hr

My mother absolutely loved this caponatina (or caponata - I believe the distinction is in how finely you chop the components), Although she became disabled, she would patiently wait for eggplants to go on sale, buy up a bunch, and invite me over to prepare this recipe. We would freeze it in small containers to have throughout the year as a treat, or to bring to a friend's house at a moment's notice. Although this is generally served as an appetizer, you can be pretty creative with it. Serve it in an omelet or over some pasta. You can also add it to your antipasto platter. I just like to scoop it up with some water crackers, as a snack. I have actually made a meal out of doing that, though, because once I start, I can't stop. It is generally served cold, although room temperature is fine too.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Place eggplant in a colander in the sink and sprinkle lightly with salt. Let sit for 2 hours and rinse.
  2. Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in large skillet over medium heat and saute eggplant until it is soft and translucent, about 15 minutes. Remove from skillet with slotted spoon and reserve.
  3. Heat remaining 1/4 cup olive oil in skillet, then saute onion, celery, green pepper, and garlic until soft and translucent, about 10 minutes. Add reserved eggplant, olives, capers, salt and pepper to taste, sugar, vinegar, sauce and red pepper flakes (if using). Simmer, covered, for 20 minutes, stirring frequently. Let cool, then refrigerate.
Most Helpful

Very nice appetizer. Far better than what you can get in a jar!

threeovens September 22, 2014

We really enjoyed this dish.<br/>I used all the vegetables mentioned and I added two red peppers I had to use.<br/>I enjoyed this over bread with some cheese.<br/>Thanks a lot for this healthy and tasty dish.

awalde August 22, 2014

Loved this great appetizer! I didn't have any celery on hand so left it out, otherwise made as directed. I did include the optional red pepper flakes and loved the combination with the tangy vinegar, olives and capers. Served as you suggested with water crackers....and a nice merlot ;) Delicious - thanks for sharing your mom's recipe!

loof October 12, 2013