The caponata is a typical product of Sicilian cuisine. There are many variations, depending on the ingredients: recipes "classic" gathered around the island are about 37. It is a mixture of fried vegetables (mostly eggplants), topped with tomato sauce, celery, onion, olives and capers, sweet and sour sauce.

The etymology refers to the Spanish and Catalan "caponada" voice of related meanings. It should be considered a real folk etymology that traces "caponata" to "capone", the name by which in some areas of Sicily is called the "dolphin fish", a fish quality meat rather dry but that was served on the tables of 'aristocracy seasoned with sweet and sour sauce typical of caponata. The people, unable to afford the expensive fish, replaced it with the economic eggplant. And this is the recipe handed down to us. Some say the name of the dish derives from "caupone", taverns sailors.