Becky Luigart-Stayner
12 servings (serving size: 1/4 cup)

Sicilian favorite eggplant caponata is best known as an appetizer, but it can also hold its own as a side dish or even a main course. Red wine vinegar balances the slight sweetness of this classic eggplant caponata, featuring eggplant, raisins, tomatoes, olives, and capers.Serve with wine and crusty Italian bread. The super absorbent diced eggplant soaks up all the sweet, sour, and salty flavor, so it’s even better the next day—if it lasts that long.  

How to Make It

Step 1

Place raisins in a small bowl; cover with hot water. Let stand 15 minutes; drain. Set aside.

Step 2

Place eggplant in a colander; sprinkle with salt. Toss well. Drain 1 hour. Rinse well; pat dry with paper towels.

Step 3

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add eggplant; sauté 9 minutes or until well browned. Spoon eggplant into a large bowl; set aside.

Step 4

Heat remaining 1 teaspoon oil in pan over medium-high heat. Add onion; sauté 3 minutes or until golden. Add garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add tomato; sauté 2 minutes. Add tomato mixture to eggplant.

Step 5

Return pan to heat. Add sugar and vinegar, stirring until sugar dissolves. Stir in raisins, olives, and capers. Add eggplant mixture, stirring to combine. Remove from heat; stir in parsley. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Step 6

Note: Caponata will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days; bring to room temperature before serving.

Ratings & Reviews

Stacey76's Review

February 27, 2009
Was much too sweet with suggested sugar. Tried to add more vinegar. It was then very strongly sweet and sour. I think I simply prefer ratatouielle.

tonikitchen's Review

May 11, 2010
Since other reviewers thought this was too sweet I reduced the sugar to 1 t. and also added a little cumin and red pepper for a little more zip.

dgitlin612's Review

December 26, 2011
I checked this recipe against my Italian cookbook and they were almost identical, except my cookbook calls for 1 tsp of sugar, not 1/4 cup as this recipe does. So, since the other reviewers thought it too sweet, I went with the 1 tsp. Otherwise, I pretty much followed the recipe (I also cut back on the olives, since we think Kalamata olives are very strong). The resulting capanota was excellent. We served them on water crackers.