Roasted Red Pepper Puttanesca Sauce

Do you know what we SUCKED at growing this year?!?! EGGPLANT.
Not a single one came up after one, two, three, and finally FOUR attempts at seeding. I even used multiple varieties sourced from different seed companies, including an heirloom seed of the purple/white striped variety that I was so hopeful to watch grow. In light of my failed attempts to germinate, one of my aunts who had come up for our family picnic brought several of her own with to share.
This recipe comes from the 2016 edition of The All New Ball Book of Canning and Preserving and is safe for water bath/steam canning so long as the wine and balsamic vinegar are added in correct amounts. I did however leave out the anchovies… blech.
INGREDIENTS
6 lb. plum tomatoes 
Vegetable cooking spray
2 lb. eggplant, cut into 1-inch cubes
3 large onions, unpeeled and quartered
3 red bell peppers, halved and seeded
2 cups dry red wine 
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
11⁄2 cups chopped pitted kalamata olives
1 Tbsp. anchovy paste or chopped anchovies (optional)*
2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. ground black pepper
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 (3.5-oz.) jar capers, drained

DIRECTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Core tomatoes and cut in half lengthwise. Arrange tomato halves on 2 large rimmed baking sheets lined with aluminum foil. Bake at 400°F for 45 minutes or until softened and beginning to char. Remove from oven. Let cool in pan on a wire rack. When tomatoes are cool enough to handle, peel and coarsely chop. Place tomatoes and accumulated juice in a 6-qt. stainless steel or enameled Dutch oven.
2. Replace foil on baking sheets; coat foil with cooking spray. Arrange eggplant on 1 baking sheet; onion and bell pepper halves on another. Bake at 400°F for 30 minutes or until edges of eggplant are golden brown and onion and bell pepper are crisp-tender.
3. Add eggplant to tomatoes. Remove peel and coarsely chop onion and bell pepper; add to tomato mixture. Stir in wine and remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, 15 minutes.
4. Ladle hot sauce into a hot jar, leaving 1⁄2-inch headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe jar rim. Center lid on jar. Apply band, and adjust to fingertip-tight. Place jar in boiling- water canner. Repeat until all jars are filled.
5. Process jars 45 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Turn off heat; remove lid, and let jars stand 5 minutes. Remove jars and cool.
(*I sped this process up by roasting everything at once, instead of having to wait for the second batch to finish.) This sauce goes great on pasta for a little taste of balsamic italian! Enjoy 🙂

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