Tuscan country cuisine is a wonderful style of cooking. The flavors have a special place in my heart, and bring back fond memories of trips to Siena, Italy, and the surrounding hill towns. Our first visit was when I took my daughter there to celebrate her graduation from high school. We fell in love with the beauty of the countryside, the incredible art, the warmth of the people, and the “slow food” approach to meals.
At Cloud Mountain Farm’s 2010 Fall Fruit Festival they offered mixed varieties of sweet peppers in all shapes and sizes. I immediately thought of making Peperonata (a type of sweet pepper stew). I selected some peppers to take with me, and was excited to get home so I could taste the dish.
Don’t be afraid to cook this for as long as necessary to achieve the right texture. I usually recommend cooking food no longer than necessary, but in this case longer cooking enhances the flavors.
- Prep Time:
- Cook Time:
- Ready In:
- 1 lb. mixed sweet peppers (Cloud Mountain Farm, Everson)
- 2 Tbsp butter (Breckinridge Farm, Everson)
- 1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced (Hopewell Farm, Everson)
- 1/2 tsp salt (see Exceptions)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced (Rabbit Fields Farm, Everson)
- 2-3 tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and chopped (Cloud Mountain Farm, Everson)
- Optional: 1/4 cup fresh basil, finely chopped (The Growing Garden, Bellingham)
Remove seeds and ribs from peppers, and slice into 1/2 inch thick strips.
Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add onion, and sauté until it is softened and just starting to brown, about 8-10 minutes.
Add the peppers and salt and stir well. Cook covered for about 20 minutes, until the peppers also are soft and just starting to brown.
Remove lid, add garlic and saute 2-3 minutes more.
Turn heat up to medium high. Add tomatoes and cook uncovered for another 10 minutes or so until tomato juices are reduced to a sauce consistency.
Serve immediately. Sprinkle with fresh basil, if desired.
Cloud Mountain Farm, 6906 Goodwin Rd., Everson (they also sell at Bellingham Farmers Market)
Community Food Co-operative, Westerly and Cordata, Bellingham
Terra Organica, Flora and Cornwall, Bellingham