Here in New York we are about to hit summer harvest critical mass. Farmers Market is stuffed with so many colorful fruits and vegetables at peak freshness that I often can’t carry everything that I want home (so, of course, I pick up way too much and hail a cab home). My canvas bags are always overflowing with way more than two of us can eat before my next trip to the market, so I justify my over-buying by coming up with quick and easy recipes to keep those fresh vegetable flavors on our table for longer than just the summer season.
In the summer time I use bell peppers for pretty much everything (in salsa, sauces, and breakfast), but when I get my hands on red bell peppers I prefer to make them into something a little more special. I love charring red peppers under the broiler to concentrate their sweetness and to add a slight smokiness before I turn them into this flavorful sauce that freezes really well. This is an easy, tasty, and healthy way to add a bit of fancy into your every day meals, and to keep those fresh summer flavors on your table long after red peppers are out of season. Five ingredients, a few pulses of the food processor and you’ve got a spicy, smokey, and sweet condiment that will take your meal to the next level. I have used it on meats and shell fish, as a dipping sauce for crispy baked sweet potato wedges, or to spread on sandwiches (it is amazing with hummus, avocado, and grilled summer squash and eggplant). Pictured above, the Roasted Red Pepper Sauce was the pièce de résistance to these Eggplant, Zucchini, and Mozzarella stacks that I made up on the fly for one of our very tasty Meatless Mondays.
4 large red peppers
2 tablespoons grape seed oil
1 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce
salt & pepper to taste
Turn your broiler on High. Line a large baking sheet with foil and place grapeseed oil in the middle. Rub all sides of the peppers in oil until evenly coated and spread evenly on the baking sheet. Roast under broiler around 3-4 minutes each side, until flesh is soft and outer skin in charred. Remove peppers from broiler, and, using tongs, place peppers in a small paper bag. Roll the edges over tightly to seal in the steam, set aside.
Let peppers stand in bag for 10 minutes, and then peel charred skin and remove ribs, stems, and seeds.
Combine peppers, vinegar, chili garlic sauce, and salt and pepper in your food processor or blender.
Blend until smooth, about 30 to 45 seconds.