I was looking for an easy party appetizer using some of the sweet red bell peppers I still had from my garden, so I flipped through several Italian cookbooks I have and found the idea to make a roasted red pepper crostini (it may have been from a Faith Willinger Tuscan cookbook).
First, you need to char the outsides of the red peppers. I had about a dozen peppers, and I used an outdoor gas grill, which worked great. Then I put them in a paper bag, and closed it up tightly for a few minutes until the peppers had cooled down. Then I pulled off the peels with my fingers – from what I’ve read its important to NOT put the peppers under running water when you do this – you lose some of the tasty flavors that way.
Once I had prepped all my peppers, I prepared the other ingredients for the marinade – about 10 cloves of fresh garlic, also from my garden, which I sliced very thinly.
And I picked fresh oregano leaves until I had about a half a cup.
Then, I cut the peppers into strips lengthwise, discarding the centers and seeds of course. Next, I took a round glass tupperware dish with deep sides, and I started layering. First a layer of the roasted pepper strips in the bottom. Then I sprinkled with a little sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, and some fresh oregano leaves, and some of the sliced garlic. Then I repeated with more layers. Once all the peppers were in, I poured in enough extra-virgin olive oil to cover. (You’ll want to use a really good oil.)
And then, patience! It’s supposed to marinate ideally for two days in the fridge (covered), and then you let it come to room temperature before serving. I had only made this one day ahead of the party, but it still tasted great. I bought a couple baguettes, and some salted rice crackers for a gluten-free option. I sliced the baguettes but decided not to toast them. Just before the party I arranged pepper strips on a slice of baguette or a cracker and put them out on a platter. They were delicious! I had some leftover and I’m still enjoying them, I think they’ll last quite a while in the fridge.