Sunday, July 24, 2011

Roasting Red Bell Peppers and Garlic

These are two awesome things to keep on hand in the freezer for cooking and recipes. Roasted red bells can be used in SO many things to add a wonderful flavor and roasted garlic, I almost always use my roasted garlic in place of plain minced...NOM! You may never use plain garlic again!

Take as many red bells as you have, cut in half lengthwise, seed and take out stem and veins. Sprinkle with olive oil and kosher salt, place inside down on a foil lined baking sheet and pop into preheated hot oven. I put mine on around 400-450 degrees or so.

Let 'em cook until your house starts to smell good and the bells are getting a black charred look on them. Just a little, not completely black. Depending on the oven, about 20-30 minutes or so. No real definite time on these, as all bells vary in size and thickness. Go by your nose, if it's good. :)

Pop them into a bowl (with juice from the pan! Good flavor there!), cover with plastic wrap and let them cool to touch.

Skins will practically slid off! Don't rinse or skin under running water, you'll lose so much lovely flavor!

Give them a rough slice or chop and put into a freezer baggie and pop them (with their juice) into the freezer.
There you have it! Roasted red bell peppers ready to go whenever you are. They thaw quick, or you can just cut off (easy when frozen) however much you want and toss into stews, chilis, just about any dish roasted peppers would enhance.  I'm addicted to these things!

Now for the Roasted Garlic!

Take off some of the papery skin on a head of garlic, but not too much, you don't want all the little bulbs to fall out yet. 
Using a sharp knife, cut off about 1/3 of the top, place on square of foil, sprinkle with olive oil and kosher salt, scrunch up the foil around the garlic and pop into your hot oven.
I usually do the red bells and garlic at the same time, though the garlic can take longer, sometimes as long as 45 minutes.

It's done whenever your house smells goooood and the scrunched up pouch of garlic is squishy.
Let cool and you can take the garlic and just squish out the insides into a freezer baggie.
The frozen garlic is very easy to dip into without thawing.

You can also add a couple sprigs of Rosemary in with the garlic, olive oil and salt, for Rosemary Roasted Garlic. Good in pork and chicken dishes.

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