How to Make Roasted Peppers
There aren’t many things easier to do which add so much flavor to dishes than making your own roasted peppers. They are ridiculously expensive to purchase in the store, but ridiculously cheap and quick to make at home, not to mention extremely fun to do! Even children will enjoy this simple process.
You can roast any pepper, hot or mild. Roasting brings out the sweetness in the pepper, as well as adds a nice smokey flavor to them. Roasted red bell peppers are great in Italian pastas and sandwiches. Roasted pablanos and jalapenos are great in Mexican dishes, salsas, and sauces, as well as Southwest style burgers. Their versatility is vast, but the technique and process is the same for all.
How to Roast Peppers on the Grill
Start by taking whole peppers and rubbing them with olive or vegetable oil. Rub the oil over the entire pepper skin with your hands, getting in all the groves and seems. Place on your grill over high heat, roasting until skin blisters and turns black. Turn the peppers over once the skin on the grates turns black so that each side can char. Depending on the heat of your grill, this process may take anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes.
This same process can be done over a camp fire or other open flame as well, including your gas range’s burners in your kitchen!
How to Roast Peppers in an Oven
Though not as fun or effective as open fire roasting, a hot oven can do a fair job of roasting peppers as well. Follow the same steps of oiling the peppers, but place on a sheet pan and place in your oven instead of on the grill. You’ll want to turn your oven on as high as it will go, or instead, place the peppers under your broiler. Check on them every 5 minutes to see if they are ready to turn or not. Bake/broil, turning to char all sides, until finished.
When roasting in the oven, peppers often do not get as black as they do on the grill. But they still will get the sweet flavors and subtle char aroma.
How to Peel a Roasted Pepper
Once your peppers are finished roasting, remove them from the heat and cover with a towel, or place in a paper sack and close the top. This allows the peppers to steam in their own skin, which separates the skin from the flesh, making them easier to peel. You’ll want to let them sit for about 10 minutes until they’ve cooled enough to handle.
Once cool, simply rub the skin off with a kitchen towel (paper works as well). This is actually a bit easier than just trying to use your fingers to peel them. Get as much of the skin off as you can, preferably all of it. The skin doesn’t taste very good after the roasting process and gets a rough texture which is not fun to eat.
Once peeled, pull off the stem. It should come right out, removing much of the seeds with it. Gently cut open the pepper (I like to only cut one side so as to flatten the entire pepper out for slicing) and remove any remaining seeds. Slice, chop, or dice according to your recipe needs.
Now that you know how easy it is to roast your own peppers, you’ll never need to purchase the salt ridden versions sold in a jar at the store.
The Bald Gourmet teaches basic cooking techniques that will not only help make you a better cook, but will help you to eat healthier and spend less at the grocery store.
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