caponata recipe, caponata

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    Not many people have expereinced caponata before and in case you haven't, caponata is sweet and sour eggplant. It is absolutely delicious and is almost better than a dessert! This is another one of those amazing dishes to surprise and impress your date with. Dates (most people anyhow) love to learn new things. Teach them about caponata!


    • 1 Pound eggplant (preferably small but not Asian)
    • 1 Tablespoon plus 1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt
    • 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 Cups olive oil
    • 5 Garlic cloves, minced
    • 1 Tablespoon tomato paste.
    • 1/2 (28-oz) Can whole Italian tomatoes, finely chopped and juice reserved
    • 2 1/2 Celery ribs, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
    • 1/2 Large onion, chopped
    • 1/2 Large red or yellow bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
    • 1/8 Cup drained bottled capers, rinsed
    • 2 1/2 Tablespoons red-wine vinegar
    • 2 Tablespoons sugar
    • 1/4 Teaspoon black pepper
    • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
    • 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil


    • Cut eggplant into 1/2-inch cubes and transfer to a colander.
    • Toss with 1 tablespoon sea salt.
    • Let drain 1 hour.
    • While eggplant drains, heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large pot over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking.
    • Then sauté three forths of the garlic, stirring, until golden, about 1 minute.
    • Add tomato paste and cook, stirring, 1 minute.
    • Add tomatoes with their juice, then reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until thickened, 20 to 25 minutes.
    • Bring 3 cups salted water to a boil in a saucepan, then cook celery until tender, 5 to 7 minutes.
    • Drain in a colander and rinse under cold water to stop cooking.
    • Gently squeeze eggplant to remove excess moisture and pat dry.
    • Heat 1/4 inch oil (about 2 cups) in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat then fry eggplant in batches, stirring and turning constantly with a slotted spoon, until browned and tender, 3 to 5 minutes per batch.
    • Transfer to paper towels.
    • Pour off all but 2 tablespoons oil from skillet, then reduce heat to moderate and cook onion, bell pepper, and remaining garlic, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 10 minutes.
    • Add tomato sauce, eggplant, celery, olives, capers, vinegar, sugar, pepper, and remaining teaspoon sea salt and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes.
    • Cool to room temperature, uncovered, then chill, covered, at least 8 hours.
    • Just before serving, stir in parsley and basil. Serve cold or at room temperature.

    As the main dish, we recommend the artichoke chicken accompanied with the lemon green beans.
    As the starter, we recommend the corn bisque.
    As a dessert, we recommend the chocolate mousse.

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