as i write this, i can taste the goodness that jospehine shared with me the other week. this is so so so good. and so simple. for me, i could eat this as a lunch or share the love and serve as an appetizer at a dinner party.take it away josephine...
Fire-Roasted Bell Pepper Platter
Roasting bell peppers over a flame takes courage and patience. But the result is rewarding. Once roasted, the sharpness of the pepper has faded and the natural sugars have intensified. The flavor of the roasted peppers is intensely rich, sweet, and juicy. The texture is soft and velvety. When you work with a technique like this, you don’t really need to do much but watch the fire do the work.
You will need:
1 red bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
a block of fontina cheese, thinly sliced, then cut into 1-inch wide strips
- Starting with 2 whole bell peppers. Place them directly over a flame of a gas stove.You can do this over a gas or charcoal grill too.
Turning them frequently, until they are charred and blistered on the outside. They won't look too edible, but the black stuff comes off in a minute. While they are roasting, cut your fontina slices.
Take the peppers from the fire and place immediately in a glass bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let them sit and “sweat” for about 15 minutes. The heat from the fire and the moisture from the pepper will sweat the skin loose.
After the 15 minutes are up, uncover the plastic wrap and remove the peppers from the bowl and peel the blistered skin off with a piece of paper towel or your hands if they are cool enough to handle.
2. Cut the peeled roasted bell pepper into strips (somewhere between 1-inch to 1 1/2-inch wide). On a big serving platter, place the pepper strips on the patter, drizzle with a splash of extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar and season with salt and pepper (just eye ball the amounts. Rustic style!) At last, top the dressed and seasoned pepper strips with the fontina cheese strips. The amounts of the pepper strips decide the amount of the cheese strips. If you are a cheese lover, be my guest and use more!
- It will be messy, but the skin should come off easily. Once the skin is cleaned off, cut the pepper open, remove the stem and the seeds from the inside and you're done.
- Fontina cheese is very mild. It tastes creamy and lightly nutty. It is like a cross between provolone and gruyere. It goes really well with the roasted pepper and balsamic vinegar.
- It is also important to use the fresh roasted peppers soon. They can be stored in the refrigerator for a day or two, but they are best freshly roasted. Also, washing the peppers after you have peeled off the skin will cause them to lose some of their flavor...so don't.
- These roasted peppers are super versatile. You can add them to salad, pasta, sandwiches, and hummus. Just in about any dishes you like!