A delicious Sicilian eggplant spread.  Recipe courtesey of CSA member Mary Sue.

  • 1 ½ to 2 pounds eggplant, diced
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 4 stalks tender celery, diced
  • 3 – 4 large cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 red peppers, diced
  • 1 14 ounces can of diced tomatoes (or about a pound of fresh tomatoes, seeded and diced)
  • 3 Tablespoons capers, rinsed
  • 4 Tablespoons Kalamata olives, seeded and coarsely chopped (or green olives if you prefer)
  • 2 Tablespoons of sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • Fresh basil, torn into small pieces
  • Salt and ground pepper to taste (taste the Caponata before adding salt, as the capers and olives have already added salt).

Heat 1 Tablespoon of olive oil in a very large skillet, add the onion and celery. Cook and stir until onions and celery are soft, then add the minced garlic. Cook, stirring, for several minutes, then add the diced peppers. Add another Tablespoon of olive oil and the eggplant. Stir while cooking for about 5 minutes, until all vegetables are tender.

Add the tomatoes, capers, olives, sugar and vinegar to the pan and cook slowly until mixture has thickened slightly. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add torn basil and stir. Cool before serving. If possible, let it sit overnight in the refrigerator before serving so all the flavors develop. Serve at room temperature. Wonderful as a topping
on small wedges of pita bread or as a bruschetta topping.

Theoretically, it keeps well in the refrigerator for several days, but it never lasts that long in our household!