If you have the time, make the caponata at least a day ahead; it’s one of those dishes that improves with time. Eat it as they do in Sicily: spooned over bread or focaccia, alongside roast lamb or chicken, paired with a wedge of pecorino…in short, with almost anything! Slideshow:  More Eggplant Recipes 

Kate Winslow
June 2014

Gallery

© Guy Ambrosino

Recipe Summary

active:
15 mins
total:
1 hr
Yield:
6 to 8
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Ingredients

Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat the oven to 425°. Toss the eggplant with 4 tablespoons olive oil in a large bowl, and season with salt and pepper. Arrange the eggplant on a baking sheet in 1 layer and roast until browned and tender, flipping halfway through, about 25 minutes. Let cool.

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  • Meanwhile, cook the celery in a small pot of boiling water until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold running water until cooled. Drain well, and set aside.

  • Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over moderately high heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until just golden, about 5 minutes. Add the olives, capers, reserved celery, tomato sauce, sugar, vinegar and salt to taste. Gently stir in the eggplant, being careful not to break up the pieces. Simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, then transfer to a large bowl or platter and cool.

  • Garnish the caponata with the chopped parsley, and serve cold or at room temperature.

Make Ahead

The caponata can be made up to 3 days ahead and refrigerated in an airtight container. Bring to room temperature before serving.