I love to sit and eat a simple plate of Italian cured meats and cheese, good Italian bread, and roasted peppers. Yes, I would add a hearty glass of red wine to round out my meal. This is my ultimate comfort food.
The summertime is the perfect time to make roasted red peppers because the farmers markets will be abundant with them. Homemade roasted peppers freeze beautifully and I grantee once you start to make these, you will look for every excuse to eat them and add them to your meals.
Making homemade roasted peppers is really very simple. First, start out with fresh red peppers. Other colored peppers can be roasted, I‘ve used yellow and orange ones and they roast quite nicely. I just have a preference for the red ones.
Line a baking sheet with some foil, wash dry the peppers and lay them about 2-3 inches apart from each other on the sheet. Don’t over crowd them on the sheet because you will be turning them over throughout the cooking process.
Heat oven to low broil. Turn the peppers every few minutes (10-15) until they are roasted on all sides and soft to the point of collapse. Use tongs and be careful not to puncture the skin.
Use caution when roasting peppers; you do not want to overcook or char the skin to a crisp. If this happens it, it could be difficult to remove later on.
This is what you are generally looking for when roasting a pepper, a little darker is ok too. The skin has a burned appearance and texture, and the pepper is soft and has collapsed.
The next step can be done in one of two ways; the paper bag method or in a bowl covered with plastic wrap. I prefer the old school paper bag method because that is how I was taught by my grandmother. Place the warm peppers in a bag, close the bag tightly and let them sit around for about half an hour or until cool to the touch. The idea is that the skins will steam in the paper bags and therefore peel off easily.
Once the peppers are cool to the touch, you can clean them. Remove the skins, seed and rinse them. Now they are ready to eat. I personally like to add a little olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic and eat them with a piece of good Italian bread.
Nicky D Cooks: Roasted Peppers
Easy oven-roasted peppers
- Heat oven to low broil
- Line a jelly roll sheet with non-stick foil.
- Wash peppers and lay them on their sides on the foil and slide the sheet into oven
- Check peppers and give them a quarter turn every 10 minutes until they are roasted on all sides and soft to the point of collapse—about 30 minutes ( longer if necessary). Use tongs and be careful not to puncture the skin.
- Do not let the peppers get too charred (the skin will not come off).
- Remove peppers from oven and put them in a brown bag- fold the top over the bog to seal it closed.
- Let it sit about 20-30 minutes- the peppers will be cool to the touch.
- The peppers will be done when the skin are wrinkly and loose. Grasp the skin at the edge of the pepper and carefully peel off the skin in sections.
- Cleaning the peppers- gently pull stem from peppers (you will be able to remove most of the seeds this way) and open the pepper and gently remove the skin until it all removed. Remove any seeds that remain in the pepper.
- Once the peppers washed and cleaned they now can be frozen in containers or freezer bags.
Originally from Rhode Island, Nicky D Cooks is a writer for Ciao Pittsburgh who currently resides in Peters Township. You can find more of her recipes here.