Roasted Bell Peppers are easy to make at home and a great way to preserve bell peppers for recipes throughout the year.
Homemade Roasted Bell Peppers are delicious on everything from salads to sandwiches and other main courses. I often make them when I have an abundance of peppers in the summer time and then I will have them to use for months.
Don't limit yourself to bell peppers. You can do this for any type of pepper: hatch roasted chilies anyone? Be sure to wear gloves for hotter chilies as the capsaicin can make your hands burn.
Mythbusters: Bell Pepper Gender
Recently, I got a few bell peppers off the clearance produce rack at the grocery store. As I was washing them I noticed one of the red peppers had three lobes and the other had four.
Immediately my mind rushed to the myth of bell pepper gender that still makes the rounds on social media.
I asked myself, "what would Jamie and Adam do if confronted with this myth?"
There are three parts to myth.
First up is do peppers have gender? My hypothesis was this is ridiculous, fruit doesn't have gender. A little research gave me 10 pages of people repeating this myth without investigation and this gem from Foodreference.com
Peppers have complete flowers, that is both male and female parts in the same flower. *
Male and female fruit can only come from plant types that have separate male and female flowers, and with a few exceptions, only the female flowers produce fruit. (one of the exceptions - some papaya male flowers will set fruit).
The number of lobes is related to the specific variety of pepper. There are varieties of peppers that produce 2, 3-4, or 3-5 lobed peppers. The 4 lobed 'bell' pepper was (and is) more popular in the U.S., so plants have been breed for this characteristic.
* (Pepper trees [black & white pepper] have separate male and female flowers).
I verified this a few more places but they started to get very scientific with lots of botany terms. This would be the part of Mythbusters where they speed up the sound so it comes out sounding blah blah blah.
I was partially correct. Apparently there are fruits that have gender, but bell pepper plants contain complete flowers and self pollinate so they aren't one of them. Go ahead and do your own research into plant reproduction if you desire, I am calling this part BUSTED!
The next part of the myth is that the supposed "female" pepper produces more seeds.
Let's cut these babies open, shall we?
I admit it is a small sample size, one of each, and I did not actually count or weigh the seeds. But can we call this part BUSTED too?
Third part of the myth is taste. Again, small sample size, only one taster and I only took one bite of each since raw bell peppers don't agree with me since my pregnancy (weird, I know).
No difference that I could note. BUSTED.
So, based on the two bell peppers I tested and the 5 minutes of online research I was willing to waste on this inane topic, my conclusion is MYTH BUSTED!!
Now we get to the best part: the cooking!
- bell peppers (any color, but red, orange or yellow will be sweeter)
- vinegar (any kind, I prefer a mild rice wine vinegar)
- Slice the peppers open and remove the seeds, place on a cookie sheet or broiler pan SKIN SIDE UP and stick them in the broiler about 4-6 inches from the heat.
- Broil until the skin is charred about 5-10 minutes.
- Put the peppers into a plastic bag along with any juices that may have collected in the pan and let them cool. This will continue to steam the peppers so they are nice and soft and make removing the skins a breeze.
- Remove the skins. Slice into strips.
- If you are going to use them right away you are done. If you want to store them in the fridge put the peppers in a jar with the juices and cover with vinegar.
Recipes with Roasted Peppers
Until next time, happy eating.