Eggplant Caponata

paleo recipes, vegetables

photo Eggplant Caponata

This is the first Eggplant recipe that I have been happy with.  I’d never had any luck cooking Eggplant in a manner that I enjoyed eating.  This is a modified recipe from the 1977 classic Ceil Dyer’s Wok Cookery.

Eggplant is a nightshade so this may not be a recipe for everyone, especial those with autoimmune issues.  I had a beautiful eggplant in my Bountiful Basket so I thought I’d attempt to cook it.  The wok cooked it perfect.

Preparation

Many recipes call for soaking the eggplant in a brine, to remove any bitter flavor.  This recipe doesn’t need that, the eggplant soaks up the oil and flavors while cooking, coming out perfect.

As with all stir-fry recipes, be sure to have all the ingredients ready before you start cooking.

Peel and cut the eggplant into 1 inch cubes.  Chop one medium  onion and 5 to 6 stalks of celery.Mince or press two garlic cloves. One, 8 ounce can of tomato sauce (I didn’t have any, so I liquefied two tomatoes in the blender and added two tablespoons of tomato paste). 2 tablespoons rice or white wine vinegar.  Six garlic stuffed olives (one of my favorite paleo snacks) sliced.

Cooking

In the wok (or large fry pan) heat up about 4 tablespoons of oil on high.  I used 3 tablespoons of Tropical Traditions Organic Palm Shortening and one tablespoon of Virgin Red Palm Oil.  The palm shortening takes the flavor of the foods nicely and the virgin palm oil as to the flavor and nutritional content of the dish.

Once the oil is hot, swirl the wok gently to coat. then add the eggplant, celery, onion and garlic.  Stir-fry for about 3 minutes or until onions and celery are tender.  Then add the tomato sauce, vinegar, sliced garlic stuffed olives, salt and pepper.  Stir and cover.

Covering the dish allows the liquid from the tomato sauce to steam the vegetable.  Stir frequently and recover until eggplant is cooked.  About 5 to 10 minutes depending on the size of the eggplant cubes.

Enjoy

This is a very enjoyable side dish or could even be served as a light meal.  We used out chop sticks to eat and savored every flavorful bite.  The only change I would consider is adding some chopped ginger, I think it would compliment all the other flavors.

If you want to challenge yourself, consider getting a Bountiful Basket it available in your area.  I never know what all will be in the basket, so I get to try cooking things I wouldn’t normally buy.  Visit the locations page to find out the nearest pickup locations.

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