Caponata is a Sicilian aubergine (eggplant) dish consisting of a cooked vegetable salad made from chopped fried eggplant and celery seasoned with sweetened vinegar and capers in a sweet and sour sauce.
Today is gloomy outside and I’m moving slow after a very active weekend. My niece graduated from high school on Saturday and is on her way to college. Wow! I remember those days like it was yesterday. How excited I was packing my car up to drive to UC Berkeley, checking into the dorm and starting a whole new life at college. It’s funny, when you’re young you really have no idea how much you will later value those days. Time flies by quickly! Below is my brother Eric, his daughter Erin and myself at Erin’s Graduation this weekend! Yeah!
On Sunday, the kids and I went to the Kidstock Fundraiser at the Greystone Mansion. It was a great event which raises money for high school students to gain scholarships to attend college and there were lots of fun activities for the kids that attended! My kids had a blast with the great live performances and the art activities. Here are Aliyah and Tyler at Kidstock this weekend!
When I came home I wanted something a little different from the norm. I wanted some type of goulash vegetable dish. I had eggplant and was once again on the hunt for a new recipe. I found a Caponata recipe that I changed up a little bit to match what I had on hand in my kitchen. Gotta love the well stocked kitchen!
This Caponata recipe is a winner and everyone loved it. You can serve it as a side dish or as a main course.
Have a positive week.
Ali in the Valley
Photo by: Ali
Recipe for Caponata:
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil 3 anchovy fillets, coarsely chopped 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes 4 Japanese eggplants or 1 large Italian eggplant, cubed 2 tomatoes, halved and seeds squeezed out, coarsely chopped (below I used 1 can of chopped tomatoes) 1 red or green bell pepper, chopped (below I used green) 1 medium onion, diced 3 garlic cloves, minced 3 tablespoons capers, drained 1/4 cup raisins (below I used golden raisins) 1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar Pinch sugar 1/2 bunch fresh basil, hand-torn Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Pour the oil in a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Add the anchovies and red pepper flakes and cook and stir for a few minutes to create a base flavor.
Fry the eggplant in the anchovy oil, until it gets brown and sticky, stirring often.
Add the tomatoes, red or green pepper, onion, and garlic, continue to cook until the vegetables break down and soften, about 15 minutes.
Toss in the capers, raisins, olives, balsamic vinegar, sugar, and basil; season with salt and pepper.
Lower the heat and slowly simmer until thick, about 20 to 30 minutes. The caponata tastes great hot, cold or at room temperature.