I had always thought roasting red peppers sounded like too much of a chore, and jarred or canned were tasty enough. High quality store bought brands are perfectly delicious, but the other day I made a potato salad with scallions, bacon, blue cheese, and my own roasted red peppers and I really think the peppers made the dish.
To roast your own red peppers, you want to basically burn the skin until it’s pretty black and blistered, then place the peppers in a bag to sweat, peel, and you are done. To char them, you can either put the peppers (which you cut in half and de-seed) under the broiler cut side down (so the skin is up), or on the grill cut side up (so the skin is down).
Here is a step-by-step for the oven (to use the grill, blacken the skins using the grill then go on to step 4):
1) Preheat your oven to 500 degrees F with the broiler on and move your oven rack to the level closest to the broiler.
2) Wash the peppers, cut off the tops, discard the stems and take out the ribs and seeds. Spray a sheet pan with non-stick cooking spray or brush lightly with vegetable oil and place peppers on the pan:
3.) Keeping a close eye, broil the peppers until the skin is blackened and blistered (about 7-10 minutes, depending on your oven). (Note – I pulled these a little early – I had to pick up my kids at school. You could go until they are really charred – it makes it easier to remove the skin later):
4.) Immediately place the peppers into a plastic ziplock and seal, to sweat the peppers:
5.) Leave the peppers in the bag for 10 minutes or longer. Take them out of the bag and the skin should easily peel off. They are ready to serve or use in a recipe – enjoy.
(Looks like a heart!)