An absolute favourite all over the Mediterranean. The sweet peppers can be eaten on their own, or with bread. Dipping the bread into the extra virgin olive oil infused with garlic and roasted sweet peppers is a magical experience of its own. This vegan recipe is a bit laborious but is definitely worth it!
1 minute of preparation,
20 minutes of roasting,
1 hour of waiting to cool,
15 minutes of peeling,
overnight of resting
This recipe was prepared for 2 persons.
- extra virgin olive oil
- 1kg red sweet pepper
- 4-5 garlic cloves
- salt to taste
- Pre-heat the oven at 240°C or 460F.
- Line a tray with baking sheet and arrange the whole peppers. Roast for 10 minutes until the skin blisters.
- With a protective glove, open the oven door and turn the peppers to the uncooked side. Roast for another 10 minutes until the skin shrivels and blisters.
II. Cool to room temperature
- Remove the tray from the oven and pour the peppers into a bowl along with any exuded liquid. Cover the bowl with a cling wrap and allow to cool to room temperature for about 1 hour. Leave the baking sheet on the tray, to be used as a surface for cleaning the peppers later on.
III. Clean and infuse
- Peel the peppers and remove all the seeds. This is the tedious part! My grandmother will leave the seeds on, but I do not like their taste.
- Tear the peppers into smaller strips and put in a sealable container.
- To the container, add and mix thoroughly:
- Crushed garlic cloves
- Juice left in the bowl used to cool the peppers. This liquid is packed with flavours from the peppers.
- Generous amount of olive oil until all the peppers are covered.
- Seal the container and allow to rest in the fridge for 1-2 days.
- Before serving, remove from the fridge a few hours before to “warm” to room temperature.
We served ours as fillings for homemade pita bread.
Where we bought our ingredients in Singapore:
- Peppers – Blu Kouzina
Red sweet pepper
The sweet pepper we commonly use in the South of Italy is not the bell pepper. It has a long shape, but is not at all spicy and is much bigger in size than peperoncini (hot chilli peppers). We found that at supermarkets in Singapore, the sweet peppers are referred to as “Palermo peppers”. Despite this name the sweet peppers are truly common all over the Mediterranean, not just in Sicily. We also used these peppers to make Calabrian “Sticky” Potatoes.
Removing the seeds
An easy way to remove the seeds is by halving the peppers and removing the seeds before roasting in the oven. However, I think that this way the peppers lose too much liquid and flavour.