Gastronomy 101, a blog about food and Los Angeles restaurants

INFO: Bell Peppers 101

The bell pepper is the best known sweet pepper, and takes its name from it's vaguely bell-like shape. These are not hot peppers, but rather are mild and crisp with a sweet flavor and juicy flesh. Most bell peppers are bright green, but also may be a variety of other colors, including red, yellow, orange, purple, and brown.

I used to think that I disliked bell peppers. Then I thought that I liked for things to be cooked with peppers, but didn't like to eat the peppers (I have particular tastes). Now I know that I don't like green bell peppers. The green bell peppers are not as ripe as the other colors and therefore are more astringent and less sweet.

To learn how to roast the peppers, please see my informational post: How to Tender Roast Bell Peppers. If you've already read it, please note that I have updated it with a new method I like better, although I left the old one up so everyone can choose for themselves.

Bell peppers are better off stored at room temperature than in the refrigerator - their ideal storage temperature is about 50 degrees fahrenheit.

Antipasto Peppers: Arrange roasted peppers on a dish and drizzle with an artisan extra-virgin olive oil, then scatter herbs of your choice + coarse salt over the top. I scattered over the top on Italian herb salt consisting of coarse sea salt, dried chili flakes, oregano, thyme, rosemary & basil.

Roasted Pepper Soup:
Simmer roasted peppers with chicken broth, saffron, and ginger. Puree in a blender or with a hand blender if you have one, salt and pepper to taste, add a dollop of sour cream or creme fraiche. Mine is bright orange because I used primary color mixing principals and blended yellow and red peppers together. Voila! Orange. I bet if you just used orange peppers it would be orange as well.


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