Monday, August 07, 2006

How to Make Caponata

First go get some vegetables.
If it is summer or early fall try a farmer's market.
If you have a garden try looking there.
Any other time go to a grocery store.
Sometimes that rich lady up the street leaves her back door unlocked.
Do not go to her house and try to sneak in.
She has a big dog and it is not worth it for a few vegatables.

Anyway this is what you need to get.
Some eggplants. Maybe 2 or 3. Nice firm purple ones.
Some zuccini. 2 or 3. Get some that are not too big.
One red onion.
Two white onions.
Two red and two green bell peppers.
Maybe a half a dozen ripe roma tomatoes.

You should have on hand the following stuff.
Extra virgen olive oil.
Red wine vinegar.
Capers. The little ones not the big ones.
Good black olives. Sicilian or Greek. With the seeds still in them.
Dried chile flakes.
Salt and freshly cracked pepper.

This is an easy recipe.
Do not quit now.
You will be sorry.
Everybody else will be eating caponata.
And you, you worthless bum, will be eating coleslaw
from some deli.

OK, so wash the aforementioned vegetables.
Get out your knife.
Make sure it is sharp
I hope you don't have those never need sharpening knives.
I don't like them.
I am not going to go into it now.

Cut the ends off of the eggplant and zuccini.
Do not peel these vegeatbles.
Slice them.
Dice them.
Into cubes about a half an inch on each side.
Put a little salt on the cubes.
Then put them into a colander and let them drain any excess liquid
for maybe thirty minutes.

While they are draining,
there is something else for you to do.
You need to chop the onions and peppers.
Peel the onions.
Cut them into pieces that are about one inch square.
Please do not measure each piece of onion.
If you start to cry don't rub you eyes with your hands.
Wash your hands with cold water.
Leave the cold water running in the sink.
This will trick the crying molecules from the onion.
They will jump into the sink and die.
See these molecules are looking for wet eyeballs
and the water tricks them.
Now cut the tops off of the peppers.
Trim the insides and remove the seeds.
Cut these peppers into pieces about the same size as the onion pieces.

You have now finished the hard work.

Put a good sized skillet on the stove.
Turn the heat on medium.
Put some olive oil in the pan.
Now put the onions in the pan.
Add some salt and pepper.
Cook them until you can see thru them a little.
Do not let them get brown.
You will have a lot of vegetables to saute' here.
So relax and put a reasonable amount of vegetables in the pan at one time.
Don't let let them get crowded.
They will panic and burn themselves.
In this recipe you want the vegetables to be cooked,
but not too much.
After each vegetable has been cooked put the pieces in a bowl to be used later.
Now cook the peppers the same way you did the onions.
Next the zuccini.
Now cook the eggplant.
They will take a little more olive oil than the other vegetables.
They will need to cook a bit longer than the other vegetables.
Put the eggplant pieces in the bowl.

Ok now peel the tomatoes.
Cut them in half,
Core them and take out the seeds.
Chop them a little bit.
Saute them for a few minutes.
Put them in the big bowl.

Next get some of the olives.
Maybe twenty of them.
Take the seeds out of the olives.
The best way to do that it is to flatten the olives with something.
Your hand, the side of a chef's knife or the bottom of a pan all work.
If you use your hand make sure that it is clean.
Now take the seeds out.
I like to take each seed and put it in my mouth and chew on the little olive bits.
It is a sin to waste food.
Chop the olives.
Put them in the bowl

Put a heaping table spoon of capers in the bowl.
Put some dried chile flakes in the bowl.
How much?
I don't know how hot you like it.
You decide.
Add oregeno
A lttle mor salt and pepper.
Add some red wine vinegar.
Maybe a cup.
A little at a time.
Stir it up.

Now, put some of the mixture back in the skillet.
Turn the heat on high.
The liquid will start to evaporate.
Stir it.
The kitchen will smell like a pickle factory.
You only need to cook it for a few minutes.
Then put the cooked mixture into another big bowl.
Keep doing this till you have reheated all the vegetables.
Stir it again.
Cover it and refrigerate.
It will be ready to eat in a day or two.
Before you serve it you may need to reseason it.

Ok serve it cold.
You should be proud of yourself.
You are not a worthless bum like the people who quit are.
You are not eating coleslaw.
You are eating caponata.


Blogger Patry Francis said...

Most of the time, I'm one of the worthless bums eating coleslaw, but I think you inspired me to pull myself up by the bootstraps with a little caponata!

1:39 PM, August 08, 2006  
Blogger Fred Garber said...

Great! It is something that takes awhile but it is worth the trouble. Let me know how it turns out.

5:01 PM, August 08, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a lovely gift you are giving the world by writing this blog. I feel like I am reading a letter from an uncle or from my Dad teaching me how to cook. I will always cherish this site. Thank you.

1:22 PM, August 21, 2011  

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