I’ve mentioned before, how much of my passion for cooking was inspired by spending time with my Grandma Elise in her kitchen. I remember helping her pick beautiful red pepper from their garden, then roasting them over the flame of her gas range.
She also let me roast marshmallows over the flame of her gas range, I miss her dearly.
It’s all the little foodie-inspired memories that keep me smiling while carrying on her traditions, like roasting my own peppers at home. This year our garden’s pepper harvest was not a plentiful as we’ve liked, but luckily our friends at DeBerry Farm had lots available at the farmers’ market this weekend.
Making Roasted Red Peppers is very easy. All you need is a flame and fresh red peppers (yellow and orange work great too) I roast both traditional bell peppers and also the Italian style roasting peppers featured in this post, the bells are a little meatier while the Italians are a little thinner.
While Gram Elsie used her gas range, I prefer to use our gas grill.
Simply char your fresh peppers on your grill with the heat turned up on high, rotating them as needed so that they are black on all sides.
If roasting large bell peppers, don’t forget to do the bottom and top stem as well.
Transfer your black-roasted peppers to a sealed container, cover with plastic wrap or place in a paper bag. This allow them to rest/cool while steaming to loosen the skin.
Please, heed my warning, don’t rush and burn your hands trying to peel steaming hot peppers. Not only will your hands thank you, but once cool, they peel so much easier.
Using your fingers and scraping with a knife, remove the inside membranes, seeds, stems and all the skin (most will be blackened but some will still be red).
Do not wash or rinse your roasted peppers, it will dilute their favor. A few specks of black charred skin is normal with roasted red peppers. However if you have especially sticky seeds or skin, simply dampen your fingers to smooth them away easily.
You can use your Homemade Roasted Red Peppers immediately OR the easiest way to preserve them is to freeze them.
I prefer to lay them flat on a cookie sheet allow them to freeze, individually.
After they are frozen solid, roughly 3 hours, transfer them from the cookie sheet into a plastic zip top bag.Then take out individual roasted red peppers as needed, they will only need a few minutes to soften/thaw enough to be cut as desired.
Alternatively I will also finely chop my roasted red peppers and freeze them, pressed flat, in a quart or snack sized plastic zip top bag. You can just break off a chunk to use. This work especially great for adding Roasted Red Peppers to my Confetti Egg Salad or Creamy Bacon Pea Salad. Not only do they add flavor but also beautiful color!
Roasted Red Peppers will keep in the refrigerator for 6+ months.
In addition to freezing them, we also enjoy them as Pickled Red Peppers on top of salads (recipe coming soon).