The August issue of Bon Appetit came in yesterday’s mail and I was thrilled to see that there was an article on Ruth Rogers of London’s River Cafe fame. Along with her business partner Rose Gray, (who unfortunately passed away a few years back) she was responsible for bringing authentic Italian food to London back in the late 80’s.
I am lucky to say that I’ve had the immense pleasure of dining at the famed River Cafe on a trip to the UK about 6 years ago. It was everything I had hoped for and more. I have two of the cookbooks that these women co-authored and I frequently turn to them for inspiration. The current article in Bon Appetit features ten recipes inspired by Roger’s summer vacations in Tuscany and they typify everything that I adore about the food of Italy. I’ll probably make some version of each of them in the next few weeks and if you’re invited over for dinner, chances are you’ll be trying one of them.
Roasted Peppers With Herbed Breadcrumbs
4 yellow bell peppers, cores, seeded and quartered lengthwise
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups small pieces of torn crustless bread (such as ciabatta or sourdough)
1/2 cup flat leaf parsley
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves
1 garlic clove, minced
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Combine peppers and 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Toss evenly to coat. Place peppers skin side up on baking sheet, cover tightly with foil and roast until completely tender, about 20-25 minutes.
Pulse the bread, parsley, basil, oregano, garlic and 3 tablespoons olive oil in a food processor until fine bright green breadcrumbs form. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Uncover peppers and turn skin side up Divide breadcrumb mixture among peppers. Drizzle remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil over top.
Roast uncovered until peppers begin to caramelize and breadcrumbs turn brown, about 30 minutes. Serves: 6-8
These are great warm or at room temperature.