Caponata recipe

By Tom Norrington-Davies

  1. Serves 6 as a side (makes about 900g)
  2. Ready in 50 minutes
  3. Rating

Think of this cooked vegetable salad as a sweet-and-sour take on ratatouille, and you're on the right lines.

tried and tested


  1. 150ml olive oil
  2. 2 red onions, chopped
  3. 2 celery sticks or 1 fennel bulb, diced
  4. 1 red pepper, deseeded and diced
  5. 2 aubergines, diced
  6. 1/2 tsp salt
  7. 400g can plum tomatoes
  8. 100g large green olives
  9. 2 tbsp capers
  10. 2-3 tbsp caster sugar, to taste
  11. 100ml red or white wine vinegar
  12. 50g pine nuts
  13. Fresh basil or mint leaves (optional)


  1. 1. Heat the oil in a deep frying pan over a medium heat. Add the onions, celery or fennel, red pepper, aubergines and salt, and sweat for at least 20-25 minutes or until the pepper and aubergines are very tender. Don’t allow the mixture to catch on the bottom of the pan.
  2. 2. Squish the tomatoes through a colander until the juices have gone and you are left with a pulp. Stir this into the vegetables and continue to cook gently for a few minutes.
  3. 3. Stone and roughly chop the olives with the capers. Add to the vegetables with the sugar and vinegar, and cook for 10 minutes, until most of the liquid has evaporated. Stir in the pine nuts.
  4. 4. To serve immediately as a side dish, wilt in the basil or mint leaves, if using. Alternatively, store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days and stir in the fresh herbs to serve. You can also freeze the caponata for up to 2 months.

Nutritional info

Per serving (based on 6): 312kcals, 27.1g fat (3.5g saturated), 3.5g protein, 13.7g carbs, 12.4g sugar, 1.3g salt

Chef's tip

I don’t make this for bottling; I find it easier to freeze. If you are a consummate vegetable bottler you’re probably cleverer than me (and you obviously have a pantry – I’m jealous).


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