Caponata

Posted on: 26 September 2019 by 50connect editorial

This Italian dish is a wonderful way to welcome autumn. It is a rich and rewarding Mediterranean-style stew which has the added bonus of being good for you too.

Caponata

Caponata should be a staple in everyone's culinary arsenal - whether working or retired. You'll need to allow a couple of hours to do it justice (prep 30-odd minutes and an hour or so on the hob), but its rich creamy flavours will make it all worthwhile.

Don't be deterred if you haven't cooked with aubergine before, it is an absolute star of the kitchen and can be bent to your will so easily. You'll love it, it is such an adaptable fruit. That's right,shock horror ... eggplant, brinjal, whatever name it goes by on any given day it remains a fruit rather than a vegetable. 

Anyway, enough rambling. Crack on and cook! 

Serves: 4-6

Preparation: 35 minutes

Cooking: 75 minutes  

Ingredients

  • 2 lb aubergines, cubed
  • salt
  • 3½ fl oz olive oil
  • 1½ oz onion, chopped
  • peppers, gherkins
  • 1 oz capers, rinsed and dried
  • 6 celery leaves, chopped
  • 2 oz green olives, stoned
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1 wine glass red wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp pine kernels
  • handful of raisins - optional, depending on your palate

Method

  1. Cover the cubed aubergines with salt. Put in a colander in the sink and leave to drain for at least an hour. Wash and dry well. Divide the oil between two deep pans and fry the aubergine cubes in one pan.
     
  2. In the other pan fry the onion, capers, celery leaves and olives (and raisins if used) over a low heat for about fifteen minutes.
     
  3. When the aubergines are soft remove from the oil and drain on kitchen paper.
     
  4. Add the sugar and vinegar to the onion mixture, let the fumes of the vinegar evaporate then stir in the aubergines and the pine kernels. Serve warm or cold.

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