Classic Eggplant Caponata


PREP TIME | 10 mins plus wait time 30 MINS


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I love the flexibility of this dish. It can be used as an appetizer-spread over crusty bread, as a dip for crackers and crudités. To make a quick dinner, simply mix with your favorite pasta and a few dollops of burrata. It’s warm, earthy, tangy and satisfying.


• 5 tablespoons olive oil
• 1 -1/2 pound eggplant, unpeeled, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
• 1 medium onion, cubed
• 4 large garlic cloves, chopped
• 1 14 ounce can diced tomatoes plain or with Italian seasonings in juice
• 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
• 2 tablespoons capers, drained and coarsely chopped
• 1/3 cup chopped fresh basil and more for garnish
• 1/4 cup toasted walnuts or pine nuts, optional
• 1 tablespoon sea salt
• Freshly ground pepper
• 4 oz Burrata cheese, optional
• Crusty bread or crackers to serve along side


1. Toss chopped eggplant with one tablespoon of kosher salt, mix well and let sit for 30 minutes. Rinse well and let drain.
2. Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium heat. Add eggplant, onion, and garlic cloves. sauté until eggplant is soft and brown, about 15 minutes. Add diced tomatoes and juice, then red wine vinegar and drained capers.
3. Cover and simmer until eggplant and onion are very tender, stirring occasionally, about 12-15 minutes.
4. Mix in fresh basil. Transfer caponata to serving bowl and add in Burrata, if using, and season with additional salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.
6. Sprinkle with toasted pine or walnuts of using and garnish with additional fresh basil and serve with crusty bread of crackers.


Double Dusty Recipe: Double the recipe and serve it as an appetizer with drinks on a Friday or Saturday night and then over pasta with a crisp green salad for a weeknight meal.

Serve warm, at room temperature, or cold. Caponata can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and chill. If using as a pasta sauce, Boil 1/2– 1 pound favorite pasta, save half cup pasta water and add to drained pasta, mix in caponata and top with burrata and fresh basil.

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