Thursday, December 10, 2009
Sautéed Christmas Peppers
From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...Several summers ago I stumbled on the solution to lack of color on my Christmas table. Double cut lamb chops were sizzling on the grill when I realized I had a rainbow assortment of bell peppers almost past their prime. It was a now or never moment. Working on the assumption that they'd be delicious with anything coming off the grill, I grabbed an onion, some fresh herbs, my best olive oil and the dregs of some chilled red wine and commenced a kitchen experiment. It was successful enough that the effort was repeated, and, while the mixture overwhelmed poultry, it proved to be a great side with beef as well as lamb. When Christmas rolled around, I remembered the gorgeous jewel tones and decided to make this part of our holiday dinner. I've done so ever since. I've fashioned a recipe, actually a technique, for you, but I hope you loose your imagination and create a version of your own. I have been known to take shortcuts, so while I'll be scorned by real foodies, I'll tell those of you who are short of time or space that the peppers can also be cooked in a microwave oven. You get to pick as long as I can exercise plausible deniability. Here's the recipe. The cheat sheet is in red.
Sautéed Christmas Peppers...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite
2 red bell peppers
2 orange bell peppers
2 yellow bell peppers
2 green bell peppers
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves coarsely minced garlic
1 medium yellow onion, peeled and sliced
1 tablespoon fresh or 1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon fresh or 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
3 tablespoons dry red wine
Salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste
1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
Sea salt for garnish
1) Stem, core and remove ribs from bell peppers. Cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch strips; set aside.
2) If sautéeing: Heat oil in a large frying pan or wok. Add onions and cook until s soft, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and stir until garlic is fragrant. Add bell peppers, oregano and rosemary; saute 5 minutes. Add wine and cook, covered until peppers are tender, about 5 minutes longer. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in parsley. Transfer to a serving bowl. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and serve immediately. Yield: 8 servings.
3) If microwaving: Place peppers, onions and garlic in a large microwave container. Toss with olive oil. Microwave, covered, on HIGH power for 5 minutes. Uncover and stir. Add wine and cook, covered, for another 5 minutes or until peppers are crisp tender. Remove from oven. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in parsley. Transfer to a serving bowl. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt and serve immediately. Yield: 8 servings.