Italian Caponata

PREP TIME: 10mins


Aubergine is the star of this classic sweet and sour Sicilian vegetable dish. This Italian classic is super easy to make and absolutely delicious.

Serving Suggestion:

  • amazing as part of a mezze platter (foccacia, green salad, good buffalo mozzarella)
  • stirred through pasta of choice (I like penne)
  • as a topping on some wholegrain cous cous
  • alongside some toasted ciabatta

Serves 6


  • 2 large firm aubergines
  • 2 400g tin whole peeled tomatoes (or 6 fresh skinned ripe tomatoes )
  • 2 medium red onions, peeled & chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 tbspn red wine vinegar
  • 60g (1/4cup) stoned kalamata olives
  • 3 tbspn capers, washed
  • 4 tbspn chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • Sea Salt & Pepper
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil


  1. Optional: Wash the aubergines, cut the stalk and base and cut the flesh into 2.5cm cubes. Place in a colander and add 3tbspn sea salt. Toss to cover all the cubes and leave for an hour to allow the bitter juices to seep out. Wash and press dry. Salting the aubergine prevents the aubergine from soaking in lots of oil while frying.
  2. Heat 2tbspn of the oil in a large, thick bottomed saucepan, add the onion and celery and gently fry until soft. Add the garlic and cook for 5min, then add the tomatoes and 1tbspn salt. Simmer over a medium heat for about 25min.
  3. In a separate large non stick pan, heat 4tbspn of olive oil. When very hot, place one layer of aubergines in to brown. Use tongs to turn cubes over so that they brown on all sides. Remove and drain on kitchen paper. Repeat with the remaining aubergines cubes until all fried. Sprinkle the aubergine with the vinegar and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Season the tomato sauce, then stir in the aubergines, olives, capers and the parsley.
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Share this recipe on social media