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Delicious and Easy Roasted Bell Pepper Salad
I love bell pepper season. I've gone to my CSA farm and picked in the neighborhood of two bushels of bell peppers. Not a single pepper went to waste. This Italian-inspired recipe was passed down to me from my Roman mom. The roasting technique, though, is one she learned from her Hispanic in-laws, my dad's family. Anyone who has ever roasted their own chiles will be familiar with this process. Those of you who have stood next to a chile roaster at the farmer's market can imagine how fragrant roasting peppers in this manner can make your home!
For this salad you can use any bell peppers. In fact, this is great as a green or red pepper recipe. For a more visually-pleasing salad I like to use a mixture of colors.
- bell peppers
- olive oil
- salt & pepper
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- Start broiler.
- Rinse the bell peppers. Dry.
Recipe for peppers -- easy? Unusual?
Blacken Bell Peppers
Place clean bell peppers directly under the broiler. Allow to become blackened. Turn every 2-3 minutes.
The skin will bubble, which is fine. Watch carefull so that the flesh of the bell pepper does not become charred.
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Sweat the Bell Peppers
Remove bell peppers from broiler. Place in a sealable container. Allow to "sweat" -- the steam escapes, loosening the charred skin.
When sweating chiles, plastic baggies are usually used. For bell peppers, I prefer a plastic container. Either one works.
The sweating -- and cooling down -- takes about 15 minutes. I have even left bell peppers overnight.
Remove the Skin
Remove the skins by rubbing each bell pepper with your fingers. You can also remove the stem and seeds by hand
It is possible to rinse the bell peppers to remove an charred flakes still left. This may water down the flavor, though. It is generally not advised to rinse chiles in this manner.
Favorite Bell Peppers
What is your favorite bell pepper?
Dress the Bell Peppers
Cut the bell peppers into stripts. For a homier effect, you can tear the soft pepper apart.
Sprinkle bell pepper strips with salt and pepper to taste. Add crushed garlic and toss. Drizzle olive oil over bell pepper strips and toss again.
For less-intense garlic taste, substitute garlic salt for crushed garlic.
Bell pepper salad is often better the next day when flavors have had a chance to meld.
Health Benefits of Bell Peppers
1 cup bell peppers
Nutrition % of Daily Value
Health Benefits of Ingredients
Peppers, which were popular from Aztec times, offer many health benefits. All peppers, from bell to habanero, contain a naturally occurring compound called phytochemicals. Many of these phytochemicals act as antioxidants, helping neutralize the free radicals that can damage the body’s cells.
Nutrient-dense peppers also contain high levels of vitamins A and C. Red bell peppers in particular are rich in beta-carotene, which is thought to help protect against certain types of cancer. They also contain lycopene, which might help decrease the risk of ovarian cancer.
Peppers come in many shades: green, red, orange, yellow, purple, brown, even black. Nutritionally, the best advice is to vary the colors to receive the most benefits.
Olive oil contains monounsaturated fats. These types of fats may help lower cholesterol. Choosing olive oil over saturated fats like butter has been linked to a decreased risk in heart disease.