The first time I prepared a roast pepper salad it happened to be whensome Rumanian relatives came for dinner. They went on and on about how the delicious dish brought back flavors from the old country. When I invited them, I’d had no idea, before they arrived, that roast pepper salad – salată de ardei copți – was a classic Rumanian dish. There were some very happy guests that evening.
This colorful salad has become one of my absolute favorites. I love how the natural sweetness in the peppers combines with the tartness of the vinaigrette. Heaven.
But there was a problem in paradise. The way this dish is traditionally made – peeling and seeding each pepper after it roasted and cooled – was just too time-consuming to fit into a my hectic schedule. It became a rare treat, prepared for guests and celebrations. That is, until I found a way to cheat just a little, and cut preparation time way down.
Here’s my super-quick version. Because I usually have vinaigrette handy, the active preparation time takes
me no more than 5 minutes: the time it took to cut the peppers.
Roast Pepper Salad
6 bell peppers (nice to use a variety of colors)
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp vinegar (I used apple cider vinegar)
1 small clove of garlic
pinch of salt
- Slice the peppers into uniform strips.
- Place the slices on a baking tray lined with aluminum foil and place the tray in the oven.
Note: If you put it on the top shelf it’ll roast faster but that means you’ll have to check them more often to make sure they don’t burn. (Note to self, don’t start writing emails in another room when this is in the oven). Alternatively, place them on a lower shelf. Cooking time will be a bit longer, but you won’t have to be as vigilant.
- Roast the peppers on high heat for about 20 minutes, turning them when they just start to blacken slightly.
- While they are roasting, prepare the vinaigrette by combining the crushed garlic, olive oil, vinegar, and a dash of salt.
- Remove the peppers. Cool. Mix with the vinaigrette.
Serve at room temperature.
I placed the yellow, red, and green peppers separately on the tray. They each cooked at a different speed with the yellow being ready the soonest and the red taking the longest, so cooking time can vary somewhat.
If you want to read a more classic Rumanian roast pepper recipe, you can find one here. The link is to a Rumanian blog, but my dear friend, Mr. Google Translate, helped me decipher it.
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