Caponata (version XVIII)

3 tablespoons olive oil
3 stalks celery, diced
1 red onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium eggplant, unpeeled, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup pitted green olives
3 tablespoons capers
1/2 cup italian parsley, minced
1/4 cup pine nuts

Sauté the first four ingredients over medium heat until the onions are translucent, about 10 minutes, and set aside. Sauté the eggplant with the olive oil and salt for about five minutes, stirring often to prevent sticking.  Add the onion mixture back into the pan with the eggplant, along with the vinegar, sugar, onions and capers.  Cover and simmer on low for about 30 minutes. Cool and add parsley and pine nuts.

To serve, let caponata cool to room temperature and spread on toasted bread or pita triangles, or toss with cooked pasta for a quick dinner.

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