Peperonata

I am definitely a bit of a big pot girl!  Those who know me will tell you I am not really refined and neither is my food! I like having a big pot of something about – the sort of thing that you can serve in a huge bowl or platter to oohs and aahs and then have a box full left in the fridge for grazing on or reinventing during the next few days.  I used to tell myself it’s because I probably should have had a small hoard of children; As I only have two I tell myself it’s because my OH works from home and I like to ensure that when she crawls wearily from her home office there is a bowl of something nourishing that she can just shove in the popty ping and et voila!  However between you and I it is because I am just simply greedy!

So this week I have made peperonata to go with simply steamed purple sprouting  broccoli dressed with olive oil and lemon juice and a big juicy steak.  Unusually for a Saturday night , it’s just The OH and I so a simple laid back supper is called for.

One of my blog followers this week told me that she would like me to be more precise as she finds it difficult to just throw a handful of this and a handful of that into a pot.  So I am going to try and be a tad more precise especially for you Alison!

Slice a large white onion and gently sauté it in a knob of butter and about three tablespoons of olive oil until it is golden and glistening.  Throw in 6 peppers (I like all one colour but it doesn’t have to be) which you have cut into strips ditching the stalk; seeds and pith. Stir into the onions and cook over a medium heat for 15 minutes.  Add to the pan 6 fairly large tomatoes which you have chopped (you can peel them if you want the faff – I don’t).  Mix the tomatoes in and season generously – I also add a teaspoon or two of sugar just to help the natural sweetness develop.  Leave the pan of deliciousness splutter away on a good simmer for 30 to 40 minutes until you are left with a lovely panful of jammy peppers.  Add one or two teaspoonfuls of white or red wine vinegar and taste.  I quite like a bit of a thwack so may add a little more vinegar to my taste – it really lifts the dish. Hey presto there it is.

Peperonata is wonderful served as a side; as lunch with some goats cheese; as part of a mezze; on toast; or topped with an egg.  So may opportunities await it over the next few days – that’s if you have any left.  The above would serve 6 to 8 people as a side so you could always halve it, however it keeps well in the fridge. Feel free to add herbs or garlic and use lemon juice in place of the vinegar.

It really is amazing what happens in that pan when you add the few ingredients and just let it blip away happily.  Enjoy. Ximage.jpeg