Piedmont Roasted Peppers

Courtesy of Delia Smith's Summer Collection See Delia Online. This recipe was first discovered by Elizabeth David and published in her splendid book "Italian Food". It was cooked for me by my Tasmanian friends Gavin and Kirsten Bailey, and was delicious.

  • 4 large red peppers (green are not suitable)
  • 4 or so medium tomatoes
  • 8 anchovy fillets, drained
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • Extra virgin olive oil 8 dessertspoons
  • Freshly milled black pepper
  • To serve: 1 small bunch fresh basil leaves

For this it is essential to use a good, solid, shallow roasting-tray 16 x 12 ins (40 x 30 cm): if the sides are too deep, the roasted vegetables won't get those lovely, nutty, toasted edges. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C) Begin by cutting the peppers in half and removing the seeds but leave the stalks intact (they're not edible but they do look attractive and they help the pepper halves to keep their shape). Lay the pepper halves in a lightly oiled roasting tray. Skin tomatoes by placing them in boiling water for one minute and then slip off the skins. Cut in quarters then divide amongst each pepper half. Snip one anchovy per pepper half into rough pieces and add to the tomatoes. Peel the garlic cloves, slice thinly and divide amongst the peppers. Spoon one dessertspoon of olive oil into each pepper. Season with freshly milled pepper (but no salt) and place the tray on a high shelf in the oven for the peppers to roast for 50 minutes - 1 hour. Then transfer the cooked peppers to a serving dish, with all the precious juices poured over, and garnish with a few scattered basil leaves. These do need good bread to go with them as the juices are sublime. Focaccia with olive is a recommendation.


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