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Monday, May 30, 2011

Zucchini Caponata



From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...Classic caponata is a Sicilian dish that's made with eggplant, olives and capers. It has a unique bittersweet taste that I've grown to love and I use it the way many folks use pesto. It's not unusual to find it on my table as an appetizer or a side-dish and I've even been known to use it as a main course. The second round of our holiday meals centered on food from the Mediterranean. I selected foods that lent themselves to the grill and al fresco dining. Yesterday, I used caponata as an appetizer. Tonight, I used it as a sauce for a pasta that made a light and simple supper. I'm not terribly fond of eggplant, so I've replaced it with a variety of summer squash that is more to my liking. You'll notice that I cut my vegetables into a larger dice than is generally used in caponata. I prefer the texture of chunkier vegetables and I've found caponata prepared in this way can be served with brushetta or pasta with equally good results. I've really simplified the classic recipe and use only those ingredients that are absolutely necessary to achieve the flavor I want. There's no denying that a lot a lot of chopping is required to make this, but if you like bold flavors, I know you'll love this dish and find the effort worthwhile. Here's the recipe.

Zucchini Caponata...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite

Ingredients:
1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 teaspoons minced garlic
3 cups zucchini cut in 1/2-inch dice
1 cup yellow squash cut in 1/2-inch dice
1-1/2 cups chopped skinless tomato
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 to 3 teaspoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 to 2 tablespoons drained capers
1/4 cup pitted halved black olives, preferably oil-cured
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

Directions:
1) Heat oil in a large heavy skillet. Add onions and celery and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.
Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in zucchini, yellow squash and tomatoes. Reduce heat and cook, covered, until vegetables are cooked, about 20 minutes.
2) Stir in tomato paste and cook, uncovered, until liquid evaporates.
3) Add sugar, salt, and pepper; stir and remove from heat. Cool slightly. Stir in capers, olives and basil. Refrigerate, covered, for 8 to 24 hours before serving. Yield: 2 cups.







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66 comments :

Kris Ngoei said...

The colors and textures are just appetizing... Definitely love to serve them for breakfast and supper, great choice :-)

Pondside said...

This sounds intriguing. I'll bet it's good with grilled cheese, with eggs, with toast.....

tandysinclair.com said...

I have never thought to use other vegetables so thank you so much for the inspiration! Have a great Monday :)

thecompletecookbook said...

Mary, what a magnificent sauce, dip, accompaniment, stand alone, vegetable Caponata taste explosion. I love your recipe.
:-) Mandy

Sonia (Nasi Lemak Lover) said...

This sound so good and healthy too!

Alessandra said...

This is super yummy and just my kind of food!

Thank you also for the previous post, I didn't see the comments' button.

ciao and have a good week

Alessandra

Les rêves d'une boulangère (Brittany) said...

This is really my type of recipe. I love the ingredients (though I'd add eggplant in too because I love it) and it would be so lovely to share with friends before dinner.

Priya said...

Zucchini caponata looks super inviting, a beautiful appetizier..

Food Glorious Food! said...

Never tried any Sicilian food before .Thanks for sharing@

Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

This sounds like a fantastic starter, definitely going to try this. Diane

LoveIsBrightAndYourMySunShine said...

that looks so good!

Nami @ Just One Cookbook said...

Oh yum! Looks so delicious. I love bread and this zucchini caponata on nice warm bread is like a perfect lunch for me. I'm always amazed you cook so many kinds of food and you share those recipes endlessly. You are amazing and I really, really admire of you Mary!

Hovkonditorn said...

Looks so yummy!

My Little Space said...

Hmm..mm.. what a great meal to start the week. Thanks for sharing it. Have a great week ahead,
Blessings, Kristy

Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

I will definitely try this Mary, it looks great:@)

The Blonde Duck said...

I've never heard of it but it looks great!

StephenC said...

I like this idea. I too am not overly fond of eggplant. I do however like the summer squashes.

FLORY said...

i like it,verry verry good and the picture.....wonderful!

Barbara said...

I make mine with eggplant, Mary, but I'll try it next time with zucchini. I love the chunkier texture too!

BTW: I made your chocolate shortbread. Read a lot about it first, though. Many people add cornstarch and extra flour, but I followed your recipe exactly. You have to time the cutting perfectly, but other than that, they turned out well. Many thanks.

mimosacafe said...

thanks for the stop by Mary. your zucchini caponata looks so healthy and delicious. i am on a diet these days and this kind of vegetable recipes are just what i am looking for. i will give it a try soon. best wishes.

PeggyR said...

This sounds very tastey!

bellini said...

Sounds perfect for a light meal Mary!

yummychunklet said...

I like how this one dish can be used as an appetizer or a sauce. Great recipe!

Clint said...

I don't know how you do it---so creative with every single post.

Chris's Gourmet Fashion said...

Your caponata looks really good. I do sometimes add in zucchini to my caponata but never thought to make one with only zucchini. Great idea. Have a wonderful memorial day!

Elaine said...

That looks so good. I hope you have a great Memorial Day!

Rue said...

Nice! I'm a big bruschetta fan, so this looks great! Plus, I just happen to have a zucchini waiting for some inspiration. Thanks!

Candi said...

Thanks for leaving such a sweet comment on my blog! And thanks for visiting. Love your recipes!

runningtothekitchen.com said...

Thanks for stopping by Mary! This caponata looks great. Coming from a fully Italian family I've had this quite often. Love this version :)

Cheryl said...

I love your Memorial Day Tribute by the way! I have heard of Caponata but had no idea what was in it, very interesting!

dr.antony said...

It is much simpler than the name!

Jenn said...

I never thought to use caponata as an actual sauce... genius!!!!

Jay said...

these look so perfect n delicious..:)
Tasty Appetite
Event: Letz Relishh Ice Creams

Melynda said...

I liked everything about traditional caponata EXCEPT the eggplant, I can't wait to try this. I purchased organic zucchini yesterday, how handy is that? Thanks Mary.

Wanna Be A Country Cleaver said...

Mary,
Thank you so much for stopping by my blog, you comment absolutely made my day. You are a delight.
This post just came up and got me drooling, it look absolutely scrumptious. You surely have a new follower in me! I'll definitely be back for more. All the very best ~Megan

aeshcame said...

thanks for dropping by my blog. this looks wonderful and healthy as well. just love to top up toasts, must give this one a try!

Catherine said...

Dear Mary, You have whipped up one of my favorite dishes. I absolutely love caponata! I have made it with zucchini also and the flavor it just perfect. Perhaps a little sweeter, but I like that too. Have a wonderful and blessed day. Catherine xo

Mamatkamal said...

This is one of favourite too! Very healthy sauce dip and it goes well with almost anything! Have a lovely day Mary!
Cheers

Ginny said...

You could eat this on toast with tea and make a whole meal of it!!

Wendy Irene said...

To be honest I am not a huge fan of eggplant either. I appreciate the idea of using squash in its place :)

Nina said...

Love the flavors and chunky texture of this Caponata. I can imagine having this on a piece of toast, grilled fish or chicken, yum!

sheila @ Elements said...

This look wonderful, and I might try making it with eggplant instead of yellow squash. We both much prefer eggplant, and neither one of us are that fond of squash. I'm sure it's something we'd both love. I've bookmarked this so I can make it soon! :) Thanks for sharing the recipe! :)

Rita said...

What a lovely summer treat; great combination, so it has to be good.
Rita

pigpigscorner said...

I dont think I've had this but it sounds delicious! I prefer chunky veg too, nicer texture.

Tinny said...

Buonissima!

Gloria said...

Sounds delicious Mary, and look beauty, xgloria

Gina; The Candid RD said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog today! Your comment was so sweet, thank you :)

Happy Memorial day, and what a perfect recipe! I love summer zucchini.

Cassie @ Bake Your Day said...

This sounds like a lot of things that I love all tied together in one. I can imagine using this as a compliment to so many things!

Judy said...

I happen to love eggplant caponata, but it is such a pain to take the seeds out. This recipe looks so easy, I think I'll give it a try.

Pegasuslegend said...

My dear fathers favorite! oh how he loved this, he would fry bologna and add this to it.. we loved it as children. Your recipe is exactly as I remembered it... thanks for sharing I love the days and miss him so much!

Plateful said...

Caponata is a new dish to me...looks delicious though and I'm loving the sound of the bittersweet taste, ah!

Jennifurla said...

never had this, must be remedied...I think chopping is therapeutic!

Tasha said...

This sounds fantastic and I love how versatile it is. And if given the choice, I'll take zucchini over eggplant!

Au and Target said...

Looks delicious and I bet it's a lovely smooth rich taste.

Nicola @ unhip squirrel said...

I love olives and zucchini... and antipasto in general! It would be lovely with some prosciutto as well! lovely!

Miriam said...

I love how versitile this is, and SO delicious! Have a beautiful day :), Miriam@Meatless Meals For Meat Eaters

Anna A. said...

I'm a big time eggplant lover but I'd nosh on this zucchini version any day of the week as well. Love those capers!

Joanne said...

I adore caponata also and try to eat as many variations on it as possible! I love your zucchini substitution!

Treat and Trick said...

Your photo is tempting me to try out this perfect and yummy combo!

brandi said...

our zucchini plants are just starting to come up in the garden. I'm bookmarking this now so I'll remember to make it.

meeshiesmom said...

Can't wait to make this! I was finally able to plant my garden this weekend and I'm always looking for great zucchini recipes.
Karen

Gen said...

That's perfect on a good bread! Must be great on a picnic day.

Swathi said...

Zucchini caponata looks dleicious, i am going to try them when I buy zucchini .

sally said...

I'm always looking for recipes to make zucchini more appealing. This caponata recipe looks great!

That Girl said...

I'm okay with chopping when the results look like this.

Tender Branson said...

Eggplant and olives and capers on a crusty bread? Beautiful!

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