The Fusia/FuscÓ Family  

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Caponata with Pasta

Classic southern Italian dish. This tastes best served slightly warm or room temperature but not hot.
Great as a as a side dish or on bruschetta. And with pasta here (rigatoni or orecchiette work well)

2  tablespoon  balsamic vinegar,
2  tablespoon  basil, chopped
1  tablespoon  capers, chopped
1/4  cup  dry white wine,
1  large eggplant, cut into 1 " dice
3  teaspoon  garlic, minced
2  teaspoon  kosher salt, or to taste
2  tablespoon  olive oil,
4  slices of pancetta - 1/4 " thick, diced
1  tablespoon  parsley, chopped
4  plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1/4  teaspoon  red chili pepper flakes, or to taste
1  small red onion, chopped
1/4  teaspoon  rosemary, chopped, or to taste
1 tablespoon toasted pine nuts  1/2 cup halved Sicilian green olives (not the ones in brine with pimentos)
   1/2  cup  water


Place a large pot of salted water on to boil for the pasta. Sprinkle the eggplant with three-fourths of the Kosher salt. Let drain for a bout a half hour. 

Place a large nonstick pan over medium heat and when it is hot, add the eggplant. Cook until the eggplant is golden brown on all sides, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the eggplant from the pan, drain on paper towels, and set aside.   

Reheat the sautÚ pan. Add the oil and pancetta; cook over medium-high heat until golden brown, about 7 minutes. Add in the onion and cook 1 minute. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute more.   

Add the cooked eggplant, capers, olives, tomatoes, wine, water, pepper flakes, and the remaining salt, stirring well after each addition. Reduce the heat to medium and cook until the eggplant is very soft and the caponata has a thick consistency, about 15 minutes.

Begin cooking the pasta; cook al dente, about 12 minutes. Drain and keep warm.

After cooking, finish the caponata with vinegar, basil, parsley, rosemary, and scallions. Allow to cool for 10 to 15 minutes before serving over the cooked pasta.