Recently the convenience shop n our complex was giving free veggies to their customers as they had surplus produce which cannot be stored for a long time.Prominent were red and yellow peppers and purple/red cabbage which otherwise cost a bomb in the same shop.
And to think I had visited the same shop previous evening and got the red and yellow peppers at a high price.Anyway the next day I too got a bagful of these and was wondering how many dishes I could transform these into before they go bad. And the first dish that came to my mind was the Italian peperonata.
In my family everybody loves the peppers and more colourful the more better.
Peperonata is a simple vegetarian side with coloured peppers, onion and tomatoes along with spices and flavourings. Though there are several versions to this I have chosen a simple and hearty version from SimplyRecipes.
Olive Oil: 2-3 tbsp
Red, Yellow, Green,Orange Peppers :1 or 2 each. deseeded and sliced into thin long strips
Onion: 1 large sliced thin long.
Garlic: 2-4 cloves sliced thin
Tomatoes: 2-3 large, chopped
Oregano: 2-3 tsp as per taste
Sugar: 2-3 tsp
Salt& pepper : as per taste
Fresh Basil: few torn coarsely
Lemon Juice: as per taste
Heat oil in a deep wide pan and while it becomes smoking hot add in onions.Add in a little salt and saute for 2-3 minutes until the onions change colour and start to brown.
Add the peppers and saute for another 5-6 minutes till they become al-dente - cooked yet crunchy.Add garlic, saute till it softens. Add the sugar and oregano and adjust the salt.
Add the chopped tomatoes and cook for another one minute. Remove from heat and add in the basil and black pepper.
Serve by drizzling lemon juice as a side along with bread or as itself.
I went for bite size peices of the pepper rather than long strips as they are easier to chew. Also green pepper is optional and not there in the source.A simple and quick preparation.Its like gourmet becomes easy. You can top bread with it and serve as canapes, or stuff tortillas or rotis with it along with some cheese.