PEPERONATA

Makes about 4 cups


*Adapted From Six Seasons by Joshua McFadden. This ‘sauce’ is a super versatile, slather it on bread with some goat cheese for a vegetarian sandwich, or you can top fish, chicken, pork, (pretty much anything) with it for a luscious flavor boost. The peppery flavor is wonderful with this rustic and earthy Cabernet.

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds peppers, mostly sweet but a few hot are nice too (use a mix of colors and varieties if possible)
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
  • 1 bunch of scallions, trimmed and cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon dried chile flakes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound tomatoes (about half regular tomatoes, cut into chunks, and half cherry tomatoes)
  • 2 teaspoons of sherry vinegar
  • 3 sprigs of fresh thyme

Prep

  1. Core and seed all the peppers. Cut them into slices, some thick and some thin, for the best texture. Set aside.
  2. Heat 1⁄4 cup olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook slowly to toast so it’s very soft and fragrant and nicely golden brown, careful not to burn.
  3. Dump in all of the peppers, half the scallions, and the chile flakes and season generously with salt and pepper. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until peppers start to relax a bit, about 5 minutes. Add half the tomatoes (use the cut up larger ones here). Cook and stir until the peppers and tomatoes get very soft, about 20 minutes. It should be nice and thick.
  4. After about 20 minutes add the cherry tomatoes, remaining scallions, the vinegar and the thyme. Keep cooking until the new tomatoes burst and their juices thicken, about 5 minutes more.
  5. Taste and season with more salt and pepper and/or vinegar if needed. Add a splash more olive oil and fold it all together. Serve warm or at room temperature.