If I had to choose a favorite vegetable based on beauty alone, the choice would be the red bell pepper for its fiery intense red color. It also comes in third place on my top three list for flavor, with spinach–second place, and corn taking the prized first place. But now, I have another reason to adore that passionate red colored, bell pepper. According to Dr. Audrey Kunin, dermatologist, and expert guest on the Dr. Oz show that aired last night, the red bell pepper is “natural Botox” for wrinkles. The pepper is packed with wrinkle fighting vitamin C, and all it takes for the “natural Botox” to work is to consume a quarter cup per day.
It’s a healthy habit to eat red bell peppers. The following is a recipe for peppers the way many people in Spain might prepare them. Here they are prepared with minced onions, as my friend Felix showed me. Another common way to prepare them is with minced garlic. Be sure to have plenty of fresh bread to accompany.
3 red bell peppers
2 Tablespoons olive oil (1 T. for the baking sheet, and 1 for the dressing)
1 ½ teaspoon minced onion
½ to 1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 to 2 teaspoons minced parsley
1) Set an oven rack in the middle of the oven and pre-heat the oven to 375°. Spread 1 Tablespoon olive oil on the bottom of a jellyroll pan, or a cookie sheet that has 1/2 inch sides.
2) Cut the peppers in half vertically. Cut out and discard the white flesh and seeds. Place the peppers on the baking sheet face down and bake the peppers for 30 minutes. After this time, remove the pan from the oven and flip the peppers. Return the pan to the oven for another 20 to 30 minutes, or until the peppers are tender.
3) When the peppers are done, place them in a plastic bag and allow them to cool for approximately 1/2 hour. After this time, remove one pepper from the bag, peel off the skin and discard it. Continue peeling the peppers until all are peeled.
4) Slice the peppers into strips and place them on a serving plate. Spread the minced onions evenly over the peppers, followed by the salt, and oil and vinegar-to your taste. Garnish with the chopped parsley over the top. Serve
*Note – I roast 5 to 6 peppers at a time so we always have some in the refrigerator. They don’t last long!