Saturday, February 23, 2013

Roasted Red Peppers with Currants and Nuts

Try this for a Lenten side dish. Serve with your favorite Lenten fish recipe.
Roasted Red Peppers with Currants and Nuts
Roasted Red Peppers with Currants and Nuts
Serves about 4 

¼ cup currants or chopped raisins
6 to 8 large red peppers, if in season, - OR – 1 (32-oz.) jar of roasted red peppers, drained
2 cloves garlic, minced
¼ cup olive oil
2 Tbsp. lemon juice or red wine vinegar
½ tsp. Kosher salt
Ground black pepper, to taste
½ tsp. paprika
¼ cup chopped nuts (walnuts, pecans, or pine nuts)

1. Place currants (or raisins) in a small bowl. Pour hot water over them just to cover. Allow to soften for a few minutes, then drain. Set aside until ready to serve.

2. To roast and prepare fresh red peppers:
  •          Place oven rack a few inches from the broiling unit.
  •          Preheat oven to broil.
  •          Wash peppers, leaving them whole.
  •          Place peppers on a foil-lined, lightly oiled baking pan.
  •          Turn peppers every 5 to 7 minutes, as they start to blacken and blister. Be sure all sides have been cooked.
  •          Remove pan from oven, covering peppers with aluminum foil for about 10 minutes. This will help loosen the charred skin.
  •          When slightly cooled, rinse the skins under running water.
  •          Remove and discard stems and seeds. Rinse peppers. Pat dry with paper towels.

3. If you use jarred peppers, drain and rinse them well. Pat dry.
4. Cut peppers into ¼-inch strips and place in large a bowl.
5. In a small mixing bowl, place garlic, olive oil, lemon juice (or vinegar, if using), salt, pepper, and paprika. Mix well. Pour dressing over the red pepper strip, coating gently.
6. Cover and allow to sit at room temperature for about one hour before serving time.
7. To serve: Garnish with currants and nuts.

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