Eggplant Caponata Pasta Sauce

    1 hour 10 minutes

    This is a rich eggplant sauce which combines the flavours of Italian caponata and parmigiana. Serve over linguine.

    40 people made this

    Serves: 8 

    • 1 cup (250ml) olive oil, divided
    • 1 eggplant, sliced into 1cm rounds
    • 2 red capsicums, chopped
    • 8 slices mozzarella cheese
    • 1 small onion, chopped
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1 (400g) tin tomatoes, with juice
    • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
    • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
    • 1/4 cup (65ml) balsamic vinegar
    • 1/4 cup (65ml) red wine vinegar
    • 1/2 cup (80g) brown sugar
    • 8 tablespoons tomato paste
    • 8 anchovy fillets, chopped
    • 3 tablespoons capers, chopped
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
    • 1 cup (115g) grated Parmesan cheese

    Preparation:30min  ›  Cook:40min  ›  Ready in:1hour10min 

    1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C.
    2. Heat 1/2 cup (125ml) olive oil in a large heavy frypan. Saute eggplant until each piece becomes saturated with oil. Use eggplant to line the bottom of a 3L casserole dish. Saute the red capsicums until tender and layer over eggplant in casserole dish. Top with mozzarella.
    3. Heat remaining olive oil and cook onions and garlic until lightly browned and caramelised. Stir in tomatoes, basil and oregano and simmer for 5 minutes. Add balsamic vinegar, red wine vinegar, brown sugar and tomato paste. Simmer for 10 minutes. Add anchovy fillets and capers. Season with salt and pepper. Pour over the mozzarella cheese in the casserole dish. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top of sauce.
    4. Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until cheese is melted.

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    Reviews in English (22)


    Delicious recipe! I did omit the sugar entirely because of another cook's comment that the sauce tasted like a Bar-B-Que sauce and it was superb! I figured the Balsamic Vinegar would sweeten the dish enough and I was correct! My whole family gobbled it up - even my 5-year old and 19-month old children. No complaints of itchy mouths either! My husband loved the eggplant mixed in with his fettucini. I would like to suggest to anyone who is contemplating making this dish to go ahead and use the anchovies in the recipe. We are not an anchovy family. I personally hate strong-flavored fish. There is no way I would ever eat a slice of pizza with anchovies on it but when you add anchovies to sauces, it gives a depth to the dish that would be totally lacking if you omitted them. I keep anchovies on hand just for this. It can really make a difference between a good dish and a great one!For this recipe, I used the whole 2 ounce can of anchovy fillets. Just drained the oil from them, chopped them up and tossed them in at the right time. YUM!!!!!  -  07 Dec 2007  (Review from Allrecipes USA and Canada)


    really good -- but i made some changes: no bell peppers, no wine vinegar, 1/4 c. br. sugar instead of 1/2 c., no anchovies, no capers... great!!! made it again and got rave reviews--again! Here is what one person said: "Oh my gosh, recipe, please!!! Fabulous! Wanted to lick the bottom of the pan but used my broccoli instead." I made it with the capers this time.  -  27 Mar 2003  (Review from Allrecipes USA and Canada)


    Like several others, I made some changes to the recipe based on other comments. I reduced the brown sugar to 3 tablespoons, removed the anchovies, used only balsamic vinegar (didn't have any red wine vinegar handy) and used only about 2 tablespoons of olive oil along with some olive oil spray during sauteing. (Way more healthy with less total fat!) I also added 1/4 cup of chopped kalamata olives, an 1/8 cup of chopped green olives and 3/4 of a cup of sauteed sliced white mushrooms. This was an amazingly good base for a recipe, and even better after sitting a day for the flavors to meld.  -  11 May 2008  (Review from Allrecipes USA and Canada)