Many years ago, an olive oil producer’s elderly mother made lunch for us. I will never forget her caponata, which was similar to this one.
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for rubbing
- 4 tender celery ribs, diced (1 cup)
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced 1/2 cup prepared tomato sauce
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
- 1/2 pound marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
- 1/2 cup pitted green olives, chopped 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
- 2 tablespoons small brined capers, drained Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 3 tablespoons shredded fresh basil
- Six 7-ounce skinless mahi-mahi fillets
In a large, deep skillet, heat the 1/4 cup of olive oil until shimmering. Add the celery, onion, and garlic and cook over moderate heat until just softened, 4 minutes. Add the tomato sauce, wine, vinegar, artichokes, olives, pine nuts, sugar, and capers and season with salt and pepper. Simmer until the vegetables are tender and the liquid is reduced, 8 minutes. Stir in the basil and let the caponata cool.
Light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Rub the fish with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill over moderately high heat, turning once, until cooked through, about 9 minutes. Transfer the fish to plates, top with the caponata, and serve.
Serves 6—Recipe adapted from Food and Wine, July 2010