Have you ever roasted peppers before? My friends, your nose AND your tastebuds will be in for the treat of a lifetime! It’s kind of one of those things that I rarely take the time to do, but when I actually DO make them I start to feel all awesome at life and stuff for a few minutes. I mean, it seems really complicated – roasting peppers in an oven? Or if you’re even fancier, on a gas stove?! – but it really could not be easier. The hardest part is keeping yourself from peeling them too soon because it’s JUST SO FUN how the skins come off without the slightest give after a few minutes steaming in a bowl.
But then you whirl it all around with some yummy toasted pecans and parmesan cheese and garlic and suddenly you’re like this totally amazing culinary master that even the greatest Iron Chef can’t touch. You DO know that Iron Chefs don’t know how awesome this pesto is, right? 😉
Here’s the thing about this pesto though: while it’s absolutely knock-your-socks-off incredible on any food item under the sun (including a metal spoon), the best way to go is with simple spaghetti. You have to do it the way restaurants do it, tossing al dente pasta with the pesto and some of the pasta cooking water. Let it all simmer together for a few minutes to really get the best flavor and texture, and I kid you not there’s not one person who wouldn’t love it. Well, maybe if they don’t like roasted peppers. Or pasta. But hey – more for us!
Other great serving options that I’ve found are: on top of broiled fish, on top of grilled chicken, stirred into butter and slathered on bread or a nice grilled steak, tossed with fresh greens as a salad dressing, or (as stated earlier) on a spoon.
ROASTED TRI-COLOR PEPPER AND TOASTED PECAN PESTO
- 1 red bell pepper
- 1 yellow bell pepper
- 1 orange bell pepper
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/3 cup pecans
- 1/3 cup parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
Move the oven rack up to the top shelf placement and preheat oven to broil. Place the peppers on a baking sheet and then put them in the oven. You want the skins to get super charred before turning the peppers (carefully!) with tongs to char them on all sides. Remove from the oven and place in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap or foil (this helps them steam and makes the skins much easier to remove). While the peppers are steaming, about 10 minutes, place the pecans in a dry pan and heat them gently over medium heat until they get fragrant and toasty. Remove from the heat and pour pecans on a cold plate to stop the cooking so they don’t burn. Carefully peel the skins off of the hot peppers and remove the seeds and stems.
From here making the pesto is really simple – place everything except the olive oil in a food processor and pulse to combine. With the processor running, stream in the olive oil until everything well combined. Serve over pasta, on fish, spread on bread, or just with a spoon!