Roasted Red Pepper Bruschetta

>> Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Whenever we're having company over, or plan to bring an appetizer to a party, Angela's first choice is Joe's roasted red pepper with pine nuts and raisins. It's an interesting combination of smoky, sweet, and buttery flavors perfect for toasted bread rounds. We also love it as a topping for hearty crackers like Triscuits, rye crisps, or toasted pita wedges.

The original appetizer is from the legendary Rao's Italian restaurant in New York City, where Joe spent many of his younger days.


6 red bell peppers
1 clove garlic, minced
3 tbsp golden raisins
3 tbsp pine nuts
1 tbsp Italian parsley, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1 loaf of baguette, French, or other thin crusty bread
Butter-flavored cooking spray, or olive oil


Heat the broiler or grill. Place the peppers on a broiler pan or cookie sheet. Broil or grill close to the heat until the exposed side is blotchy, black, and peeling. Turn over the peppers and roast until both sides are blistered and the skin is blackened.

Place the peppers in a paper bag and allow to steam for 30 minutes. This will help you peel the blacked parts off. When finished steaming, cut off the stem and scrape the charred skin and seeds off with a knife. Cut the peppers into thin strips and let drain in a colander for 1 hour.

Stir together all ingredients (except the bread) and allow to marinate at room temperature for at least an hour.

Cut the bread into 1/2 inch thick rounds. Spray them with cooking spray or brush with olive oil. Toast in the oven until slightly browned but still soft.

To serve, top the bread rounds with about 1 tbsp of pepper mixture, or serve in a bowl with crackers or bread on the side.

Makes about 2 cups.


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