Eggplant & Olive Caponata


Salads & Grains

Serving Size

makes about 8 cups



Make a generous batch of this chunky, olive-studded, Sicilian eggplant antipasto to have on hand—you’ll be set for the week. It makes a wonderful lunch served with sliced prosciutto or any of the great Italian salami along with hard-boiled eggs, can be served on its own with chips and veggies or spooned over fish or chicken. Quite simply, if you could bottle all of the fresh-from-the-garden flavors from the Mediterranean, this Caponata would be it! 

Toss the eggplant with the salt in a colander and let sit for about 1 hour to drain out the bitter liquid. Combine the vinegar and sugar in a small bowl. Add the currants and set aside to plump. Pat the eggplant dry with paper towels. Heat 1/2 cup of the olive oil in a heavy, wide pot over medium-high heat. Working in batches, fry the eggplant until browned all over, about 10 minutes. Transfer the eggplant with a slotted spatula to a bowl. Add the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil, the celery, and the onions to the pot. Cook over medium heat until just soft, about 10 minutes. Stir in the anchovies. Add the tomatoes with their juices, the olives, capers, and bay leaf. Return the eggplant to the pot. Stir in the currants and vinegar. Simmer, stirring gently and often, until the juices thicken a bit, 10–15 minutes. Season with pepper. Refrigerate for at least one day and up to one week. Remove the bay leaf before serving.