Caponata is a relish-like eggplant salad that’s a classic Italian appetizer. Its other characteristic ingredients include fresh tomatoes, celery, and olives. Serve on fresh bread or slices of Italian bread that have been baked until crisp (bruschetta) for a first course before serving a pasta dinner.
Serves: 6 to 8 as an appetizer
- 2 medium eggplants, about 3/4 pound each
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 to 3 clove garlic, minced
- 2 medium celery stalks, diced
- 1 pound ripe, juicy tomatoes, finely diced
- 1/2 cup chopped black or green olives
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley or basil, plus more for garnish
- 2 tablespoons capers, optional
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano, optional
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Fresh or crisp bread for serving
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Place the eggplants on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake until they collapse, about 40 minutes. When cool enough to handle, peel and chop fine.
Heat half of the olive oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and sauté over moderate heat until translucent. Add the garlic and celery and continue to sauté until the onion is lightly browned.
In a mixing bowl, combine the eggplant, onion mixture, reserved olive oil, and all the remaining ingredients (except the bread, of course) and stir together.
Allow to cool to room temperature, then transfer to a serving bowl. Garnish with fresh herb of choice and serve with slices of fresh or grilled bread.
- Explore more of VegKitchen’s Super Savory Salads.