Monday, September 22, 2008
Pepper Roasting 101a
Julia Thiel in the Reader beat me to the, it's a lot harder than you think to roast pepper, post that I've had in my head since I roasted peppers last Friday. Julia and I use different methods. She broiled, the method advocated by the know-it-alls at Cook's Illustrated. I like the pyro thrill of the open range flame. Julia's problems included not having the best oil for broiling (a problem avoided with the range flame system), the time needed, and the mushiness of the resulting peppers. I'm not sure, but she does not cite the biggest problem I find. The mess. Pretty much all the sources I read mention avoiding too much water in the skinning process. That if you use a jet of water to remove the charred skin, you also use the jet of water to wash away the pepper flavor. Fine, I try as much as possible to keep the water off. Still, the charred skins start taking over my hands like a 50's sci-fi movie monster. I try to limit the damage to one hand, like when breading and frying, keep one hand dry, but as in frying, I seldom keep a hand clean. I must turn on the water to get rid of charred skins. Eventually, not all of the skins are coming off. Eventually, I turn to my friend H2O. I love having roasted peppers in the house. I'm with Julia Thiel in finding it quite a pain, and much more of a pain than you might think.