Sicilian Caponata

Sicilian caponata

Caponata is a classic vegetarian dish from Sicily made of aubergine, tomatoes and peppers. The recipe is suitable for restaurants offering guests hors d´oeuvres.


  • 4 aubergines, peeled and sliced lengthwise

  • 4 peppers, red and yellow, halved and de-seeded

  • 1 red onion, in thick slices

  • 8 plum tomatoes, halved

  • 50 ml olive oil + extra for brushing

  • 4 sticks of celery, sliced

  • 50 g black olives, de-seeded

  • 50 ml raisins

  • 2 tbsp Santa Maria Capers, rinsed

  • 2 tbsp brown sugar

  • 3 tbsp red wine vinegar

  • 0,5 tsp Santa Maria Mint

  • 5 sprigs of fresh basil, leaves

  • 50 ml pine kernels, roasted

  • 1 baguette, thinly sliced

  • 50 ml olive oil

  • 2 tbsp Santa Maria Persillade

How to prepare

  1. Preheat the grill/griddle to medium heat. Brush the aubergine, pepper, onion and large halves of tomatoes with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

  2. Grill each type of vegetable separately and put them aside when done. Grill the aubergines until soft with clear stripes from the grill, 2–3 minutes per side. Grill the peppers until soft and the skin has blackened. Grill the onions until just soft. Grill the tomatoes for about 6 minutes until dark all the way round. Slice the grilled vegetables into rough chunks.

  3. Heat up the olive oil in a large sauté pan. Add the celery and fry until soft, approximately 5 minutes. Add the chopped grilled vegetables plus olives, raisins, capers, sugar, vinegar, salt and pepper. Let simmer without a lid for approximately 10–15 minutes.

  4. Take the frying pan off the heat and stir in the basil and mint. Season with salt and pepper. Leave the caponata to rest and cool for at least 30 minutes. Garnish with roasted pine kernels and serve.

  5. Mix 50 ml olive oil with the persillade spices and brush the baguette with the spiced oil. Grill the bread on both sides until golden, about 30 seconds a side. Remove the bread from the grill and serve with the caponata.

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