Caponata of Eggplant

Marsha Gardner


A Sicilian dish with an influence of North Africa. A great starter to a meal.

I serve Caponata on crostini when we tailgate or have a gathering.


★★★★★ 2 votes




  • 1/4 c
    olive oil, extra virgin
  • 1 medium
    onions, vidalia, peeled, diced
  • 4 clove
    garlic, sliced thin
  • 3 Tbsp
    fresh thyme or 1 tablespoon dried
  • 1/2 medium
    carrot, grated
  • 2-28 oz
    cans peeled whole tomatoes, crushed by hand and juices reserved
  • ·
    kosher salt

  • 1/2 c
    olive oil, extra virgin
  • 1 large
    vidalia onion, finely diced
  • 3 Tbsp
    pine nuts
  • 3 Tbsp
  • 1 Tbsp
    red pepper flakes
  • 2 medium
    eggplants, diced
  • 2 Tbsp
  • 1 tsp
  • 1 tsp
    unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp
    fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried
  • 1/4 c
    basic tomato sauce
  • 1/3 c
    balsamic vinegar
  • ·
    kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 5 sprig(s)
    mint, fresh, chopped
  • 1
    baguette, sliced into 3/4-inch rounds and toasted on grill or in oven

How to Make Caponata of Eggplant


    In a 3-quart saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook until soft and light golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes.

    Add the thyme and carrot and cook 5 minutes more, until the carrot is quite soft. Add the tomatoes and juice and bring to a boil, stirring often.

    Lower the heat and simmer for 30 minutes until as thick as hot cereal. Season with salt and serve. This sauce holds 1 week in the refrigerator or up to 6 months in the freezer.
    In a large 12 to 14-inch saute pan, over medium heat, heat the olive oil until hot but not smoking. Add the onions, pine nuts, currants and chili flakes and saute for 4 to 5 minutes until softened.
  3. Add the eggplant, sugar, cinnamon, and cocoa and continue to cook for 5 more minutes. Add the thyme, tomato sauce, and balsamic vinegar. Bring the mixture to a boil.
  4. Lower the heat and simmer the mixture for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool to room temperature, garnish with mint and chili flakes. Serve the caponata spooned on crostini or in middle of table with crostini on side to allow guests to help themselves.

Printable Recipe Card

About Caponata of Eggplant

Dietary Needs: Vegetarian

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