Ingredients (will serve 4 as a main course, or many more as an appetizer):
1 very large or 2 medium eggplants washed and cubed into 1" pieces
1 medium or large yellow or orange pepper (roasted on stove) and diced into 1" pieces
4 garlic cloves, peeled crushed and chopped finely
1 large yellow or red onion, chopped finely
1 box of chopped tomatoes (such as Pomi brand)
2 tablespoons of capers, drained
3 tablespoons of red wine vingar
1/4 of a small lemon
1/2 teaspoon of sugar
1 bunch of fresh basil for garnish
1/4 cup of toasted pine nuts (optional)
about 4 tablespoons of olive oil
crunchy or toasted bread (such as sliced grilled baguette or toasted whole grain on pita) or grains of choice to serve
In a large sauce pan, over medium-high heat, sautee chopped onion in 2 tablespoons of olive oil and for a couple of minutes while you roast your pepper on another burner, turning this every 15 seconds until lightly charred all around. (See pics in slideshow above and don't worry if this is very unevenly done, the idea is just to get that roasted flavor in the dish which add really nice flavor.)
After about 3-4 minutes, add in garlic and eggplant, and sautee, stirring, with added 2 tablespoons of olive oil if sticking to pan.
Meanwhile, chop up your roasted pepper, and add this to the pot too.
When the onion and eggplant are well softened, (after about 10 minutes total), add in tomatoes, capers, sugar, lemon and vinegar, stirring well.
Season with salt and pepper and simmer with a lid on, stirring occasionally, for another 12 to 15 minutes.
If you wish to add toasted pine nuts for crunch, and chopped fresh basil for garnish, you can stir these in when you serve. I find this dish is delicious and hearty when served hot, on a cold winter night, and also really refreshing and light, when served chilled, on a hot summer day or for a picnic.