(Serves 6 to 8)
1 large eggplant, cut into 1/3-inch cubes
6 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, divided
2 medium zucchini, cut into 1/3-inch cubes
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
1 red, orange or yellow bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
5 large cloves garlic, chopped
5 large field tomatoes cut into 1/3-inch cubes, with juices
1 Tbsp. tomato paste
2 tsp. fresh thyme, chopped
3/4 tsp. sugar
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
3 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil
Heat half the oil in a large pan over medium heat.
Add eggplant and cook, stirring frequently, until soft and starting to brown, 10 to 12 minutes.
Transfer to a plate and set aside.
Add another tablespoon of oil to the pan and cook zucchini until tender-crisp, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a plate; set aside.
Add two more tablespoons of oil to the pan and add onion and bell pepper.
Cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes.
Add garlic and continue cooking for 3 minutes more.
Add tomatoes, their juices, tomato paste, thyme, sugar, and vinegar.
Cook, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes are broken down, 8 to 10 minutes.
Add cooked eggplant back, bring to a gentle boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for about 10 minutes or until the eggplant is soft.
Add back zucchini at the end.
Sprinkle with fresh basil and serve.