Saturday, October 12, 2013

Good Eats

I haven't done a foodie post in a while, haven't really been cooking or preparing blogworthy items.  

My friend Marie asked me if I would be interested in making eggplant caponata, a Sicilian specialty consisting of cubed, fried eggplant, celery, tomatoes, seasoned with a sweet and sour syrup of sugar and red wine vinegar, and olives and capers.  My Sicilian grandma made an excellent one, but I never did get to write down the 'recipe'.  I looked online and found one that sounded like what I remembered, and Marie and I got to work in her sunny, beautiful kitchen.



We salted and let the cubed eggplant rest to draw out excess water and bitterness.



Marie and I each prepped a different part of the recipe.  All the veggies came from a roadside farm stand right near Marie's home in Monroe, NJ.


Best, most sweetest watermelon I ever ate from Krackerjacks Farm Stand

We also made roasted red peppers, my favorite to serve as an appetizer with fresh mozzarella and as part of an antipasto.  They are wonderful to add to sandwiches, egg salad, and hummus.



Kitchen smelled so delicious while we worked!



Caponata 

I peeled and seeded 26 peppers.  Marie bought a bushel full, a couple we had to toss and Marie put some aside to stuff.


Easiest way to roast a large amount of peppers, under the broiler!

When peppers are blackened, place in a large bowl and cover with plastic wrap.  They will steam and skin is easy to remove and so is the stem with all the seeds attached.



We sterilized jars in the dishwasher on the sani-cycle




We had a fun day.  Marie even made a delicious eggplant parmigiana for dinner the night before, and we enjoyed it for our lunch break.



Two city girls originally from Brooklyn, enjoying God's bounty and keeping our grandmothers' recipes alive.

Sharing with Seasonal Sunday, Tutorials, Tips & Tidbits, Bouquet of TalentYou're Gonna Love ItWhat's It Wednesday, From the Farm, Sweet and Simple Fridays, Full Plate ThursdayFoodie Fridays, and Home Sweet Home.  Thanks to all our hostesses.

xo

Note:  Since we really used "culinary license" here, if you are interested in making these yourself, contact me and I will send you our "scrib" notes!







35 comments:

  1. Everything looks delicious. I think I've got to look for an eggplant.

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  2. Mmm...Barbara...molto buono!!!! You a very talented cook!
    Kisses
    Alessandra

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  3. Sounds like you had a wonderful day and ate very well Barbara! Nice to see the sun today after the last couple wet ones-enjoy:@)

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  4. What fun to cook with a friend and the food looks delicious! I have never roasted red peppers, but I have always meant to try. Thanks for the inspiration!!

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  5. Count my hubby and I in for any recipe with eggplant, and those roasted red peppers are delicious, I know. I will look up caponata recipes.

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  6. Always so much more fun to spend time in the kitchen with a friend! It all looks beautiful!

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  7. Awesome post Barbara!!! The first time I had eggplant caponata was Christmas two years ago and it was love at first taste! I always wondered why the eggplant had to rest...didn't know it actually drew out any bitter flavor. I am sure you and Marie had a blast cooking together...such a bonding experience. What wonderful day you must have enjoyed!!!
    XO Barbara

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  8. I am imagining the delicious smells coming from the kitchen as you and Marie worked together preparing these dishes. It sounds like a great way to spend the day.

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  9. I SO wish I could come sit at your table and feast!
    Brenda

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  11. Aww I love it! What fun to cook with a friend, Barbara! That makes prepping and eating twice the fun with happy memories of both of your grandma's. Wish I could've joined you. I'd bring dessert. xxoo
    Had to delete my first comment.. My iPad wasn't behaving and too many misspellings!

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  12. What a wonderful day! Friendship good food and great memories! It all looks so good!

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  13. Oh my, I'll bet that kitchen smelled wonderful! I can also imagine that there was some kitchen camaraderie...maybe a little chatting? Fun!!

    I love that you were replicating family recipes, keeping the memories alive.

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  14. I love eggplant and I would love the recipe. What a fun day to spend with a dear friend, cooking and having lunch. Thanks for the ideas.
    Have a great day. I am a new follower. Stop by and see my posts.
    Mary

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  15. I love eggplant! Everything looks delicious! Thanks for sharing. Have a happy Sunday!

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  16. That looks like so much fun, Barbara! I make pasta with my best friend and we always have a blast. Love your pics - looks fantastic!

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  17. What a fun day you two must have had. I love cooking with family or friends. :)
    Everything looks so good.

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  18. Hmmmm, looks and sounds delish! I think it's great fun to cook with someone else. I'm glad you had a fun day!

    xo
    Pat

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  19. What a fun day you and Marie had fixing a delicious family recipe! I've wished my family lived close so we could bake together. I have memories of my Mom cooking and baking and my MIL was a great cook too. Thanks for sharing your day with us I so enjoyed it.

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  20. Oh, I forgot to mention how cute your Fall blog banner is!

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  21. Wow! That's a lot of peppers!! This looks delicious and what fun to have quality family time:)

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  22. Hi Barbara! I'll bet there were lots of laughs in your kitchen! Everything looks so good and those are the prettiest red peppers I've ever seen. Thank you for popping in to see me, sweet friend. We're hanging in there.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

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  23. What a bountiful day, Barbara! It will be so nice to have these jars of caponata and roasted red peppers to enjoy on a day you don't feel like cooking. There is nothing as good as home made...yum!

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  24. Those veggies look so delicious Barbara! And those watermelons too! I miss those the most! I start in May around Memorial day buying a whole watermelon and cutting it up and placing it in a big bowl in the fridge and eat about one whole melon a week until the season is over! I guess you can say I'm a real fan! :-) Thanks for stopping by my blog, it is always a pleasure hearing from you.

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  25. Dearest Barbara;
    I've never heard of or tasted caponata and parmigiana p;) I checked them with PC, haha. What a wonderful day you had with your friend♡♡♡

    Sending you lots of love and hugs from Japan, xoxo Miyako*

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  26. Barb,
    Thanks so much for all your visits and for all your sweet comments!! Your visits always bring a smile to my face!!

    Hugs,
    Debbie

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  27. What a wonderful thing to have a friend come over and cook together. I remember living on an army base some 45 years ago and how we wives would get together almost every night and cook up some of the tastiest meals ever. The memories are of the friendship, good times, and good food. Thank you for sharing.

    Candy

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  28. It sounds like you had a great day creating and cooking and tasting, aren't those just the best days, loved the post...Phyllis

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  29. I'm looking online right now for the earliest flight out from Denver Barbara! Have coffee and this ready when I get there! OMG this looks so good I swear I can smell it all the way here!!

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  30. What a wonderful way to spend a day. It looks like you've cooked up some wonderful memories.

    - Alma, The Tablescaper

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  31. That sounds like a fun day. I love roasted red peppers...yum. I also have some eggplant in the frig right now that I need to use for something. I hate knowing we are headed into "no fresh produce" season soon.

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  32. You are so lucky to have an abundance of peppers. Peppers at the farmers' markets here in Seattle have gone up to $6.99 a pound! In Portland they are much less, it's almost worth it to travel there! Your recipe looks lovely.

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  33. Such a fun day! I can tell you did have fun and the eggplant dish sounds so good. I am still playing catch up from Bob's Birthday.
    Blessings, Ginger

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  34. What a fun day with a friend and what a fabulous result. Your Caponata looks amazing and the canned jar are just fabulous! I would have had so much fun with you'al! Thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday. Hope you are having a great weekend and come back soon!
    Miz Helen

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