Thursday, November 11, 2010

How-To Roast a Red Pepper

I am not a huge pepper fan. Actually, the only reason I eat them is because a few years ago I started forcing myself to eat them because I knew they were good for me. But then, I discovered roasted red peppers and I fell in love. Red peppers are slightly sweeter than other peppers, but when roasted, they are transformed. The flavour is sweeter, deeper and simply awesome.

Here's the kicker...ever try to buy some at the grocery store? Ouch! EXPENSIVE! Well, at the rate I consume them, yes expensive. So I decided to try to master the art of roasting them myself. When I really got hooked on them was late this summer when they were in season. At the Trails End Market in London, Ontario, I found 7 peppers for $1.00...MADNESS!!! Right now at grocery stores, peppers are like 4/$5.00 (or something like that). See the power of buying in season?

Anyways, just because peppers are no longer in season, doesn't mean you can't enjoy a really good roasted pepper now and then. Just can't eat them on everything haha.

Step 1
Let me show you the process. Its really quite simple, and once you do try it, you will never have to buy the jarred stuff again.

Step 1: Clean peppers, cut out the inside and lay them flat on a baking sheet.

Step 2

Step 2: Put your oven rack up to the very top and put the oven on broil. Put your baking sheet on the top rack so the peppers are extremely close to the flame. If you were using a BBQ in the summer you can just put it right on grill (this is my preferred method, the peppers get a smoky flava)

Step 3
Step 3: Once the skin of the peppers get blackened, take them out. I know, this seems like they are completely burnt (and maybe I left them in about 30 seconds to long in this picture) but you want to char the skin. It also makes it easier to peel off later.

Step 4
Step 4: Put the peppers in a bowl and put saran wrap on top. This will capture the steam and help the skin lift off the pepper (also making it easier to peel)

Step 5: Once the peppers have cooled down a bit and you can handle them, peel the skin right off.

And there you have it folks, a roasted red pepper.

Tip: If you want to make a ton at a time, you can put them in a jar with some olive oil. They will last in the fridge for about a week (possibly 2 weeks). Actually, they can last a whoooole lot longer if you use propper jarring techniques. But I don't have patience for that. Plus in my house, roasted red peppers wouldn't last that long enough to have to worry about it.

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