Recipe by JackieOhNo!
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.
- 1 large eggplant, peeled and finely diced
- 1⁄2 cup olive oil, divided
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 large celery ribs, chopped
- 1 large green pepper, chopped
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- 10 large pimiento-stuffed green olives, chopped
- 2 tablespoons drained nonpareil capers
- salt and pepper
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 1⁄2 cups tomato sauce or 1 1⁄2 cups marinara sauce
- 1⁄2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
Directions See How It's Made
- Place eggplant in a colander in the sink and sprinkle lightly with salt. Let sit for 2 hours and rinse.
- 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.
- 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.