Sunday, August 19, 2012

What to Do With All Those Red Peppers!


August is that magical time of year when gardens overflow with bounty.
You wake up, open your front door to greet the morning and there on your door step is a brown paper grocery bag full of zucchini, with a sign - Please care for me.
You find zucchini boats hiding under their canopy of leaves.

This blog, however, is not about the dredded zuchinni taking over the world.It's about red peppers.
My neighborhood market has a utility cart tucked between produce and bakery in which "thank you for coming, but it's time to go" fruit and veggies are placed. I pick up some good stuff there between 69 to 99 cents. On a recent visit, I noticed a huge plastic bag full of red peppers. The only bad pepper was near the bottom. For $1.99 this was a bargain.
I invisioned taking them home and popping them in the oven with some olive oil to make roasted red peppers. Then I remembered that it was going to be about a hundred and heck outside and I didn't want to heat up my house. What to do, what to do?
 I froze them instead. Talk about easy!!

Cut up the peppers into the shapes you want. I chose to keep them in large strips, but you can slice them into thinner strips or chunk them.
Line a baking sheet with wax paper and lay them out.
Place them in your freezer for a day.

When they're frozen, label gallon freezer bags, dump them inside and take as much air out of the bags as possible before sealing. Notice the straw sticking out of one of the bags? I seal the bag up to one corner, stick the straw inside and suck the rest of the air out of the bag, then close up the corner.
It's that easy! No blanching necessary.

Now when I want to roast some peppers, or use them for soup or salad, I'll pull some out of the bag, defrost them and voila! they're ready to go.

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