Sicilian Eggplant with Crostini

6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 eggplant, medium, trimmed and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
3 celery ribs, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1 pear, firm but ripe, peeled, cored and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
to taste sea salt
to taste black pepper, freshly ground
1/2 can imported italian tomatoes, 28-ounce can, seeded and pureed
2 tablespoons capers
20 kalamata olives, pitted and halved
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons) parsley, fresh, minced, for garnish
1 baguette, sliced diagonally 1/4-inch thick
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

In a medium saucepan, bring salted water to a rolling boil.

Meanwhile, heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large sauté pan. When the oil is hot, add the eggplant cubes. Sauté over medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring often. Remove with a slotted spoon and let drain on paper towels.

Cook the celery in the boiling water for about 8 minutes, or until tender but firm. Drain well and set aside.

Place the remaining oil in a large sauté pan and turn the heat to medium. Add the pear and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Stir well and cook for approximately 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, celery, capers, olives, vinegars, and sugar. Cook for 15 minutes, or until the tomato has reduced to a thick sauce.

Add the eggplant, stir to combine the ingredients, and cook for 10 minutes, or until eggplant is tender but still holds its shape. Transfer to a platter and shape into a mound. Cool.
Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight. Before serving, sprinkle with parsley and surround with crostini.

Preheat a clean grill for about 30 minutes.

Brush each bread slice lightly on both sides with olive oil.

Place bread on grill; grill on each side for about 3 minutes. Or, toast on a baking sheet in a preheated 350ºF oven.

Number of Serving: 6

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