Good Day. Ready for a cooking lesson?
I love roasted red bell peppers. Not the kind that you buy in a jar at the grocery store; those have added sugar, salt , and preservatives. I mean an unadulterated red bell pepper that is roasted over a flame. With so many ways to use roasted peppers ~ in scrambled eggs or a frittata, as a topping for bruschetta, garnish for pizza, puréed for a soup ~ it’s a great technique to know how to do. And they are so good for you ~ full of good vitamins and minerals. For several years, I had a great tool for doing that ~ a pepper roaster, but when it just disappeared after we moved in our house, I really missed roasting peppers at home. So I went to the Sur la Table where I used to work in the culinary school and bought a new one. It’s less than $20.
Today, I’ll show you how to roast a pepper and please come back tomorrow for a delicious recipe using roasted peppers.
The Pepper Roaster
The roaster is versatile: you can also warm tortillas and pita bread on it. I’ve roasted corn on the cob on it, too – after first, boiling the ears for awhile in boiling, salted water.
Notice the little handles on the sides: they are made of wood, so you can’t put the roaster in the oven or on an outdoor drill unless you cover them tightly in foil.
How to Roast the Pepper
Wash the roaster first to remove any coating. Place the roaster over your gas burner and turn on the heat to medium. Then place the pepper on the grates. Some directions will tell you to coat the pepper with oil, but it’s not necessary. You will need tongs to turn the pepper. You can get up to three peppers on the roaster.
Don’t turn the pepper until the bottom is black all over the bottom. Then turn it over with the tongs and repeat on all sides.
This is exactly how black the pepper should look.
When all sides are charred, you will need to hold the pepper with tongs for a minute or so to char the bottom.
I like to place the pepper in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. I’ve seen some directions to put the pepper in a paper bag, but why waste a bag? Make sure that the plastic wrap doesn’t touch the pepper; the heat from the pepper can melt the plastic!
Let the pepper cool for about 10- 15 minutes. Then over the sink or a bowl, gently rub off the charred skin. Some skin will come off in big pieces and some in small pieces. Resist the urge to put the pepper under running water – that will remove the flavor in the pepper. Clean just your hands as needed until all the charred skin is removed.
Next, gently pull on the stem; it will come out along with the seed pod in the center. Discard. Some seeds will remain. On a cutting board, split open the pepper with a paring or utility knife and scrape away the seeds.
Depending on how you are going to use the pepper, either thinly slice or dice (for a salsa, scrambled eggs, frittata or sauce) or cut into chunks with a paring knife. For a soup or a dip, you can puree the pepper. Now you are ready to use the roasted pepper in a variety of ways. Have fun!!
You can put roasted, chopped peppers in a jar with olive oil and store in the refrigerator. Use as needed.
Come back for a delicious recipe featuring roasted red bell peppers.