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Grilled Eggplant Caponata Recipe

Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time1 hr 5 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 servings

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup pine nuts
  • 2 eggplants 1 pound each, peeled and sliced lengthwise in 1/2-inch thick slices
  • ¼ cup olive oil extra-virgin, extra for brushing
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 large onion cut into ¼ inch dice
  • 2 celery ribs cut into ¼ inch dice
  • ¼ cup currants
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper more if you like it really hot, less if you don’t like hot at all
  • 28 ounces crushed tomatoes
  • ¼ cup sugar light brown
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ½ cup kalamata olives pitted, quartered
  • ¼ cup chipped mint

Instructions

Toast the Pine Nuts

  • You can toast them in a small frying pan on top of the stove or roast them in a preheated oven (350ºF) for about 4 minutes. They are done when they turn golden brown. Let them cool and reserve.

Grill the Eggplant

  • Preheat your grill.
  • While it is heating up, brush the eggplant slices with some of the extra olive oil then season with salt & pepper. Grill the eggplant over medium heat until tender. There may be some charring going on and that’s fine.
  • Let the eggplant cool down and cut into ½ inch dice.

Cook, Combine & Serve

  • Heat the ¼ cup of olive oil in a large skillet. Add the onion, celery, currants, crushed red pepper and reserved toasted pine nuts. Cook over medium heat until the onions and celery soften.
    Be sure to stir often so nothing burns. This should take about 10 minutes.
  • Add the crushed tomatoes, light brown sugar and balsamic vinegar. Adjust the heat to bring the ingredients to a simmer.
    You want to cook this down for about 8 minutes until most of the liquids have evaporated.
  • Add the diced eggplant and olives to the skillet. Stir to combine and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve at room temperature with the chopped mint as a garnish.

Notes

This dish is As Good As It Gets