No, not THAT kind of sweet and sour…
This is actually an Italian recipe – Melanzane in Agrodolce from Mario Batali; and it is quite good – tho’ I probably should have served it as part of a platter of antipasti than simply as a side dish with some beer-braised grilled linguiça on (rather nice) home made poppy seed challah rolls. Some crusty Sweet Honey French Bread, a couple of good olives, mebbe some soppresseta and a few good shavings of cheese… oh well, next time. And there will be a next time.
•1 eggplant, sliced
•1/2 red onion, diced
•1 sweet onion, diced
•5 baby bell red, yellow and/or orange peppers, seeded and cut into thin strips
•1 cup vinegar (I used seasoned rice vinegar)
•3 tbsp sugar
•1 tsp Seasoned Salt
•1 tsp Tellicherry pepper
•1 tsp celery seed
•Olive oil for frying
Heat about an inch of olive oil in a frying pan until quite hot, but not smoking, then cook the eggplant, a few slices at a time so that you don’t crowd the pan, for about 3 minutes per side, until the slices are nicely golden brown.
Transfer to a pan lined with paper towels to drain and continue with the remaining eggplant.
Add another tablespoon of oil to the pan, if needed, add the diced onion and sauté for five minutes. Add the peppers strips and cook for another three minutes and remove from heat.
Whisk the vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper, and celery seed together, then pour over the onion and peppers in the pan.
Transfer the drained eggplant slices to a large bowl and pour the vinegar and onion mixture over all.
Set aside to rest for at least an hour before serving at room temperature.
In truth, it wasn’t too, too bad as a side dish (tho’ Rich would disagree); but with that crusty bread and those olives and cured meats and shaved cheese?
Much more better, I think.
Try it and see if you don’t agree.