The Pepper Party!

Welcome to The Pepper Party! 

Until I started receiving a box of veggies from my CSA, I never realized how well peppers grew in Minnesota. We always have a plethora of peppers in our box each year. This year seemed to be even more plentiful. 

Slowly, my pepper pallet has expanded from simple bell peppers to include Ukrainian, Thai, mini sweet (pictured above), poblano, jalapeƱo, and roaster. I'm sure more varieties are on their way. 

I know it is October and I should be posting about pumpkins, but frankly I have all winter to eat pumpkins. They keep. Peppers, on the other hand, need to be eaten or preserved now. Thus, welcome to The Pepper Party!

Cracker Pizzas

These adorable pizzas make the perfect party appetizer with which to use your peppers! The ones I made were personal size pizzas, but they were tricky to eat. So, I recommend making bite-size pizzas instead.

What you'll need:
Bite-size crackers (homemade or store bought)
Tangy spreadable cheese (I used labneh. Goat cheese would also be good.)
Arugula (or similar bitter lettuce)
Sweet peppers
Olive Oil

What you'll do:
  1. Spread a thin layer of the cheese on top of the cracker. 
  2. In a small bowl, toss the arugula in a little olive oil - just enough to lightly coat it. 
  3. Top each cracker with a layer of arugula, followed by thinly sliced sweet peppers and coarsely chopped walnuts.

Print this recipe.

Warm Seitan and Pepper Salad

This recipe, strangely enough, emerged from my lack of motivation to cook potatoes. Instead, I just grabbed whatever looked appetizing to me at that moment. Because this is what I was craving, it was perfect at the time. Now, I'd like to experiment a little more with the sauce/dressing on top. Because of the spicy mexican Field Roast "sausage", a tomatillo salsa or tomato salsa would have been awesome on this. 

What you'll need:
Frisee or Arugula
Sweet peppers
Field Roast Mexican Chipotle Sausage
Olive Oil
Mozzarella cheese
Pesto (or salsa? See headnote.)

What you'll do:
  1. Chop the onion, slice the sweet peppers, dice the "sausage".
  2. Heat about a tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for about 3 minutes. Add the sweet peppers and "sausage". Stir to coat with oil and let cook until the peppers and onions are soft, about another 5 minutes or so. Stir often as Field Roast has a tendency to burn easily, which ruins its texture and flavor.
  3. Place a generous handful of the frisee on each plate. Top with some of the "sausage" mixture. Sprinkle cubed mozzarella on the top of the warm salad. Dollop pesto on top, adding enough to help the salad ingredients meld together. 
  4. Eat as a salad or enjoy in a tortilla. 
Print this recipe.

Pickled Peppers

Earlier this summer, I canned for the first time. For some reason, watermelon rind inspired me to delve into the unknown world of canning. The latest roaster peppers from our CSA inspired me again to do some canning - this time pickling peppers!

I love anything tangy - so you can imagine how much I love pickles. The roaster peppers we've been receiving all summer are crazy hot, probably due to our crazy hot summer. Roaster peppers are the size of bell peppers with the heat of jalapeƱos. Seriously. My mouth (nor my hands!) cannot take the heat. A little goes a long way. 

I've frozen peppers in the past, but this time I decided I wanted to pickle them. I love spicy pickled peppers on sandwiches and in creamy salads like my Fabulous Potato Salad. I ended up with just one small jar of pickled peppers from my three gigantic roaster peppers. 

Of course, they're not ready to eat yet. I'm hoping they'll be ready on a really cold winter day when I need a touch of summer to warm me up.