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Roasted Red Pepper Puree

This puree...or coulis...is a smoky sweet sauce that can be used on pasta, polenta, on veggies or as the base for a salad dressing.

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 
1 onion, diced 
2-3 cloves fresh garlic, minced 
1 carrot, diced 
2 ribs celery, diced 
4-5 red bell peppers, roasted and diced 
generous pinch dried basil 
sea salt 

In a deep skillet, place oil, onion and garlic and turn heat to medium. When the vegetables begin to sizzle, add a dash of salt and saute for 2 minutes. Add carrot and celery and braise, over low heat for 3-4 minutes more. Meanwhile, roast peppers over an open gas flame until outer skin is charred. Transfer to a paper sack and allow them to steam for a few minutes. Then simply rub the skin away, seed the peppers and dice. (You may oven-roast the peppers by cutting them in half, removing seeds and broiling until charred.)

Add diced peppers to skillet along with basil and a light seasoning of salt. Simmer 5-7 minutes more. Transfer to a food processor and pulse a few times to create a slightly chunky sauce. 

Makes about 1-2 cups


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