January 13, 2010
Who knew that throwing some apples in with roasted red peppers (capsicums) and tomatoes could taste so fabulous? That touch of sweet fruit in amongst the chili and garlic makes all the difference. I made this salad as part of my Arabian Nights feast, and it all vanished quickly.
Roast Pepper, Tomato & Apple Salad
adapted from Claudia Roden's Arabesque
3 fleshy red bell peppers (capsicums)
1 large onion, sliced in wedges
3 to 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 lb (450g) tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 or 2 chili peppers, left whole
salt and black pepper
2 sweet apples (such as Golden Delicious)
Place the peppers (capsicums) on a sheet of foil on an oven tray under a preheater broiler (grill), 2.5 to 3.5 inches from the heat. Turn them until their skins are black and blistered all over. Alternatively - and more easily - roast them in the hottest oven for about 30 minutes, or until they are soft and their skins blistered and blackened, turning them once after 15 minutes.
To loosen the skins further, put them in a strong plastic bag, twist in shut, and leave for 10 to 15 minutes. When the peppers are cool enough to handle, peel them and remove and discard the stems and seeds. Now cut the peppers lengthwise into ribbons.
In a wide pan, fry the onion in 2 tablespoons of olive oil over a medium heat, stirring often until they are lightly coloured. Add the garlic and stir until it just begins to colour, then add the tomatoes and chili peppers. Season with salt and pepper and cook gently for about 20-30 minutes.
Leaving the peel on, core the apples, quarter them, and then halve each quarter. Stir the red pepper ribbons into the onion mixture, then add the apple slices. Cook gently until the apples are tender, adding a little water if the pan becomes too dry.
Serve cold, drizzled with the remaining olive oil.