Recipe: Roasted red peppers

ALISON AND SIMON HOLST
Last updated 05:00 15/02/2013
Peppers
THE REAL THING: Roasted red peppers taste as good as they look.

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Made when peppers are at their best, these taste as good as they look. (There hasn't been a summertime Holst family gathering where these haven't featured on the menu for years!).

You can use larger peppers if you want to serve them as a side dish or, if you select smaller peppers, they make great finger food. Alison's original version included the anchovies, but if you want a vegetarian version, omit the anchovies and use the feta instead.

ROASTED RED PEPPERS

For 4-6 servings:

 - 4-6 red, yellow or orange peppers

 - 8-16 basil leaves

 - 8-12 anchovy fillets, (optional)

 - 16-24 capers

 - 6 medium fresh or canned tomatoes 

   OR 8-24 canned cherry tomatoes

 - 2-3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

 - 8-16 black olives

 - about 50g cubed or crumbled feta (optional)

 - about 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

 - 1 small bunch fresh basil leaves

Halve peppers lengthwise, cutting through the stems so they remain intact. Remove pith and seeds. Lay the peppers in one layer in a shallow roasting dish.

Place a basil leaf in the bottom of each pepper. Cut the anchovy fillets into pieces and place on the basil, then divide the capers between the peppers.

If using fresh tomatoes, blanch to remove skins and cut in halves or quarters. If using canned cherry tomatoes, they can be used whole, or cut larger canned tomatoes lengthways, and shake out the seeds and liquid. Place tomatoes, cut side down, in the peppers. Add an olive, a slice or two of garlic and some of the cubed or crumbled feta (if using) to each halved capsicum. Drizzle 1-2 teaspoons of olive oil over each.

Bake uncovered, at 200'C for about 30 minutes, until the peppers are lightly charred at the edges. Spoon any liquid which is around the peppers into them.

Refrigerate if necessary, and warm to desired temperature before serving or serve at room temperature. Garnish with fresh basil leaves.

Serve alone or with chunks of bread roll to mop up all the delicious juices.

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- The Dominion Post

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