Caramelized Eggplant Caponata with Pine Nuts

Caponata is the Sicilian version of ratatouille. Made with many similar ingredients, such as: eggplant, onion and tomatoes. Eggplant absorbs flavors like a sponge and long after the cooing process has ended. Hence, it is better served the next day and at room temperature.

Unlike other eggplant based dips, this is not pureed. The vegetables are cut into pieces which allows their unique flavors and textures to come through in each bite.

Delicious cooked eggplant dip made caramelized vegetables and strong bold simple flavors.

Caponata is made with simple fresh ingredients that are caramelized in a good quality olive oil. This enhances each ingredients unique properties. The soft texture of the eggplant and onions juxtaposes beautifully with the toasted pine nuts. Also the capers and olives provide a sweet and sour flavor surprise for your senses.

Eggplant Caponata is a wonderful dip made with simple ingredients and finished with toasted pine nuts. It creates a symphony of flavors for your palate that is absolutely addictive.

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This dip also happens to be gluten free and vegan. Isn’t it great when everyone can eat everything and, that everything, is delicious! I could eat the whole bowl and you will too. Once you try it! Pairs well with some homemade bread. I recommend trying it with some focaccia!

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Caramelized Eggplant Caponata with Toasted Pine Nuts

  • Author: hungrygirlinqueens
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: Dip
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: Mediterranean

Description

This delicious eggplant dip recipe is made with chucks of caramelized onion, eggplant, raisins and olives. All of the strong and bold flavors come together harmoniously for a tasty surprise.  


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 large eggplant, chopped into one inch pieces
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts 
  • 1/2 cup red onion, diced 
  • 3 stalks of celery, diced
  • 1/2 cup green olives, halved 
  • 2 tbsp capers in brine, drained
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup raisins 
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • red pepper (to taste I use about 1 teaspoon)
  • Flat-leaf parsley (chopped for garnish)

Instructions

  1. Place olive oil in a large pan at low heat and add pine nuts and toast to medium brown.
  2. Once the pine nuts are sufficiently browned, remove them from the oil and place them on a paper toweled plate to absorb the remaining oil. 
  3. Chop the eggplant and place on a paper toweled plate and dry with additional paper towels.
  4. Add the chopped and dry eggplant to the oil and let cook and soften.
  5. Once the eggplant has sufficiently softened, remove the eggplant from the oil and place it on a paper toweled plate to absorb the remaining oil. 
  6. Add onions to the pan and allow to caramelize. 
  7. Keep the onions in the pan and add the celery to cook and soften. 
  8. Add olives, capers raisins and cook.
  9. Add tomato paste, red wine vinegar and brown sugar and cook until well combined.
  10. Add the pine nuts  and eggplant  back into the large pan mix.
  11. Add salt, red pepper and pepper to taste.
  12. Allow caponata to cool and transfer into the fridge overnight.
  13. Allow to come to room temperature (should take about an hour) and garnish with parsley and serve.

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