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Spiced Pepperonata Recipe

Pepperonata is a delicious spread made from roasted bell peppers. It’s often a part of Italian antipasto platters. This version is accented with a touch of spices — garlic and chile. You may use only one color of bell pepper or a combination of colors. Serve with thinly sliced toasted bread or croûtes.

[Credit: ©iStockphoto.com/Paul_Brighton]
Credit: ©iStockphoto.com/Paul_Brighton

Yield: 6 servings

Preparation time: 15 to 20 minutes

Cooking time: 10 to 30 minutes, plus 30 to 45 minutes standing time

Spice meter: Mildly spiced

4 medium red, yellow, or orange bell peppers, about 1 pound total

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 to 3 plump cloves garlic, pressed or finely minced

1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste

1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or to taste

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste

2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley

  1. Put the whole peppers on a preheated grill, on a rack 2 to 3 inches below a preheated broiler, or on a sturdy rack set over the flame of a gas burner on the stove.

    Roast the peppers, turning them after they’ve charred and until they’re blackened evenly on the outside. This may take 10 to 30 minutes, depending on which method you use.

  2. Put the peppers in a paper or plastic bag and close tightly. When the peppers are cool enough to handle, peel off the skin with your fingers. Cut the peppers in half, then remove and discard the seeds and stem. Cut out the ribs.

  3. Cut the peppers into thin strips, then again crosswise into tiny cubes.

  4. Put the finely chopped pepper cubes into a bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to blend evenly. Let stand for 30 to 45 minutes to let the flavor develop fully. Taste for seasoning and adjust.

Roasting vegetables deepens the color and intensifies the flavor of the veggies. Because the water in the vegetables evaporates, the natural sugar in the vegetables becomes more concentrated and the veggies taste sweeter.

Per serving: Calories 128 (From Fat 108); Fat 12g (Saturated 2g); Cholesterol 0mg; Sodium 196mg; Carbohydrate 5g (Dietary Fiber 2g); Protein 1g.

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