The theme of this issue of the Hot Line is fireplaces right? So, we tried to include a recipe in tune with the theme. Admittedly this is probably more of a “technique” than a “recipe” but, hey, why quibble? The beauty of this recipe is not so much the results (frankly you can do this on the barbecue easier than in a fireplace), it’s in the reactions from your guests. You will just plain freak them out with this one. The key is to char the peppers enough so that the sugars in the peppers come to the surface. With the help of your assistant, start your fire. (Do I have to tell you at this point that this won’t work with a gas fireplace?)
Fireplace Peppers Recipe
Wash some sweet, shiny peppers. Red, orange, yellow, whatever.
Put them right into the fireplace. Good idea to use tongs and some insulated mitts.
After one side is black, flip them over.
After the other side is black and they look completely ruined and disgusting, take them out of the fireplace.
Rinse the ash and crud off of them quickly.
Seal them up in a plastic bag while they’re still hot and let them steam in there for at least half an hour. Longer is better.
With a knife, peel off all the charred bits and remove the seeds and stems. It’s best to get as much of the charring off as possible but a little won’t hurt you so don’t get too anal about it.
Add some olive oil......some balsamic vinegar... ...and some salt.
Enjoy the yummiest sweetest peppers around. These make a terrific addition to a salad or can be enjoyed on their own. As you can see from the picture, the peppers reduce down considerably so, if you want lots to eat, you need to char a mess of peppers.