This dish can be translated as a riot of colors, flavors and smells: when you cook it, your home will be filled with a mixture of sweet and sour smells.
It is a tantalizing taste, excellent from the beginning, in fact, usually, it is served as an appetizer, accompanied with good home-made bread, local cheeses and “passuluna” (dried black olives).
Cut the eggplants into cubes, not too small, and put them in salt for about an hour, so as to lose the liquid of vegetation.
Then rinse them under water, squeeze and fry in hot oil, drain them on a plate with some absorbent paper and set aside.
Meanwhile peel a large white onion, cut it and fry it slightly in a large pan with olive oil, wash the stalks of celery – remove the filamentous part with the potato peeler – and cut into pieces of one centimeter thick, add to the onion and fry a few minutes, pour a little water from time to time.
Attention … the celery at the end of cooking must be quite crispy.
This is the real “strong point” of the most original Sicilian caponata.
In the meantime, you will have prepared the capers and boned the olives.
Add the tomato paste to the celery in a pan, diluted in a glass of water, cook the capers a few minutes (to dry out the excess water), the olives, the pine-seeds and the eggplants previously prepared.
Almost at the end of cooking, after having adjusted salt and pepper, add the sugar diluted in vinegar, let evaporate and adorned with basil.
The dish is ready, let it cool before serving.
INGREDIENTS FOR 6 PERSONS
- 2 middle-size eggplants
- 1 white onion
- 1 celery head
- 2 spoons of pickled capers
- 100 gr. of green olives
- 2 spoons of pine seeds
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 spoons of tomatoe paste
- Extra vergin olive oil qs
- peanut oil to fry the eggplant
- 2 spoons of sugar
- 3-4 spoons of red wine vinegar
- Salt and black pepper