A healthy flavorful side, rich in Vitamin C and fibers: what am I talking about? Peperonata with onions and laurel. Full of colors, it is super easy to prepare. Any leftover peperonata? Turn it into an appetizing sauce to season pasta with, or use it to top some toasted bread for a delicious snack to share with our friends.
When I started planning my new blog, the brand new project in my life, Tatiana, a very talented SEO, and I had a long talk about some new useful ideas I wanted to put into practice. She gave me the most useful piece of advice ever: “When you write a recipe, make also a personal comment, tell about memories and experiences which have made the recipe special.
So, here it is, a funny memory about peperonata.
Peperonata is one of the best way to eat bell peppers and digest them well- they are very rich in vitamin C, savory and colorful; they make more appetizing also the blandest courses. But these are not the good reasons why I remember peperonata; I remember it because I nearly had to change the curtains and the wallpaper in my house. I had just married Enrico, when my mother in law decided to cook her “atomic” peperonata.
Well, my mother in law is a special person, I love her, I esteem and respect her, but I implored her from the deep of my heart: please don’t cook your peperonata any more! If you do, I’ll spend the night in the hotel, or Enrico will sleep in the garden (to purifiers himself!).
Her peperonata had the same effect as an atomic bomb in my house: unbearable awful smell permeated my house, and every piece of furniture ( we nearly had to change it) for weeks. I made my husband eat peppermints for long time in order to get rid of his terrible breath! Disgusting! I even had to throw away the pan she used to make her vegetarian bomb!
It was a harmful combination of garlic, with its core, unpleasant anchovies which nearly killed me as I am terrible allergic to them, onions, and something else I couldn’t recognize, which created one of the most dangerous weapons of mass destruction. So, I thought I had to protect the other women from bad smell, and I created a safer recipe of the peperonata.
A few pieces of advice from the supermarket top the table
Buy only organic, compact, glossy, and smooth bell peppers; they have to be very fleshy and intact: you don’t want any soft or withered bell peppers, or those which show dark spots. They must be firm to the touch and bright.
Unwashed bell peppers keep in the fridge quite well; if they lose their naturale protect cuticle, they will go bad faster. Put them into a holed plastic bag and store in the fridge drawer up to a week; after that they will get soft and you will have to throw them away (you’d better not forget them):
If you have found very tasty and high quality bell peppers, you may wash and freeze them raw. Do not cut them into pieces to preserve all their nutrients.
When you prepare peperonata, wash bell pepper under running cold water, cut them into halves lengthwise, clean out the core and the seeds. Slice the flesh into stripes or dices.
Cooking bell pepper makes them sweeter, but do not overcook them not to lose their nutrients .
Why are bell peppers good for you?
Green peppers are harvested under-ripe; actually different colored bell peppers show different stages of ripeness: green, yellow and red. Ripe bell peppers are sugary and scented, that’s why yellow and red ones are sweeter; green bell pepper have more pungent taste because they are still unripe.
Red and green bell peppers provide plenty of vitamin A and potassium; they are also rich in vitamin B6 and folic acid; they keep their nutrients both raw or cooked.
Laurel scented Italian peperonata: super easy and healthy
- 400 gr red, yellow, green bell peppers
- 4 fresh leaves laurel
- 1 tbsp
onion or shallot
- 1 and 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- chili pepper to taste
- Buy organic fresh colorful bell peppers.
- Cut them into halves lengthwise, clean out the core and the seeds.
- Wash them under cold running water.
- Slice the flesh into stripes or dices.
- In a large pot with oil, brown the finely-cut shallot (I prefer shallot to onion for its delicate taste) and the laurel over medium-high heat.
- Stir in the bell peppers cover, lower to medium heat and cook for about 10 minutes. If peperonata gets too thick, you may add little water (keep in mind that at the end of their cooking, bell peppers release water).
- Season and add some chili pepper if you like a stronger taste.
- Cover with a lid, and cook for other 15 minutes until peppers are soft.
- After 15 minutes, peperonata is ready to be enjoyed!
- It is a very light side, which fits best a bland main course, grilled chicken breast, for instance. Your meal will be appetizing without any unpleasant side effects!
- A tempting alternative: you may add some tomato purée or ripe tomatoes for a more Mediterranean taste; season with fresh basil or parsley. Really mouthwatering!