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Serves:     people
Notes from Anna

Caponata makes a wonderful accompaniment to grilled meat or fish. It is also delicious served cold as a starter.  Any leftovers can be used as condiment for pasta. Or try stuffing them in a wholemeal wrap with some goat’s cheese or mozzarella for a delicious lunch.



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  1. Top and tail the aubergines, wash them and halve lengthways. Then halve again and cut into large chunks. Don’t be tempted to cut the aubergine too small, or it will absorb too much oil. Wash, deseed and quarter the pepper and then cut each quarter into chunks. Lightly salt the diced aubergines and peppers and put them in a colander over a sink. Leave to sit for sit for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Peel and finely dice the onion. Wash and chop the celery, including the leaves. Wash and dice the tomatoes. Slice the olives.
  3. Pat dry the aubergines and peppers. Heat the sunflower oil in a large pan until a breadcrumb dropped in browns immediately. Fry the aubergines and peppers in batches until golden, being careful not to overcrowd the pan. Drain on kitchen paper.
  4. Warm the olive oil in a large, wide pan for which you have a lid. Add the onion and celery, sprinkle lightly with salt and cook until soft and beginning to colour, stirring frequently. Add the chilli flakes, if using. Fry for a minute then add the diced tomato and cook for another couple of minutes.
  5. Stir in the capers, olives, sugar, vinegar, passata and bring to the boil. Then add the fried vegetables to the pan. Season, turn the heating right down, cover the pan and simmer gently for 30 minutes. Take off the heat and allow to cool for 10-15 minutes then check the seasoning.
  6. Serve caponata on crostini, with grains or pasta or a side to roast chicken. Any leftovers will keep in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

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