Roasted red peppers are exceptionally good: tender and fruity and way better than the kind you get in a jar. And they are so easy to make! You can roast them in the oven or on the grill. The roasting process transforms them from firm and crunchy and to velvety soft, and it brings out their natural sweetness.
When I was a newlywed my husband Eddie and I made an Italian antipasto platter "every" time we entertained. Homemade marinated roasted red peppers were always the centerpiece, surrounded by rolled up slices of Genoa salami or prosciutto de parma, hunks of Parmigiana Reggiano, mozzarella balls, pepperoncini, olives and other store-bought delicacies.
Over the years we've added other appetizer recipes to our repertoire, but an Italian antipasto platter featuring homemade roasted red peppers remains one of our favorites.
I often make a caprese salad with roasted red peppers instead of tomatoes. One of our sons dislikes tomatoes and loves roasted red peppers. He gets the credit for leading me to this delicious salad.
HERE'S HOW TO MAKE ROASTED RED PEPPERS:
Preheat the oven to broil or the grill to high. If you're using the oven, set the peppers on rimmed baking sheet - You can line the baking sheet with aluminum foil for easier cleaning. (I didn't this time, but I should have!)
Set the peppers in the top of the oven, under the broiling element. You want them to get close to the intense heat so the skin will char.
The concept is the same if you char the peppers on the grill. Lay them directly on the hot grill racks.
The peppers need five or six minutes per side to get the skins black. Use tongs to give them a quarter turn every five or six minutes.
The skin doesn't have to be completely black. About eighty percent of the pepper should be charred and the red skin should look wrinkled.
When the peppers are ready, they will look wrinkled and deflated.
Now here's the trick to getting the skin to come off easily. As soon as the peppers come out of the oven, dump them into a brown paper bag.
Roll up the top of the bag to keep the steam in. I use two bags for extra insulation, one inside the other. Leave them in the bag for fifteen to twenty minutes.
I like to put the bag in the sink in case there's any leakage.
When you take the peppers out, the skin will come off easily.
Peel the peppers. Cut or break them in half. Pull out the stem with all the seeds.
You'll probably need to use a knife to scrape off some of the seeds and some of the skin.
I like the peppers to be completely free of seeds and skin. In case you wondering, those are Eddie's hands - he's a roasted red pepper aficionado.
Cut or tear the peppers into strips and place them in a non-reactive bowl or plastic container with a marinade of good quality extra virgin olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, and salt. (quantities listed below).
Roasted red peppers will keep for up to four days, covered, in the fridge. Let them come to room temp before serving.
If you're a fan of peppers, here are a few more delicious Panning The Globe recipes to try!
- Nigel Slater's Best Stuffed Peppers Recipe
- Crispy Italian Fried Potatoes and Peppers
- Sausages Onions Potatoes Peppers and Green Beans
- Tuna-Stuffed Peppadew Peppers
Here's the recipe for roasted red peppers. If you make them please come back to leave a comment and let me know what you think.Print