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Storing roasted peppers??

  • c

I have about half a dozen red and yellow bell peppers left over from a party last weekend. I hate to see them go to waste given their price. I thought that I'd roast them, but am not sure how to store them for future use. I could probably cover them with olive oil, but they're so useful as a low-fat flavor enhancer, I wouldn't want to take that away.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.


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  1. After roasting, lay them flat on parchment paper on a baking sheet. Let them freeze flat, then pop them off, into a ziplock bag, and back into the freezer for use whenever you want.

    1. I strongly suggest that you preserve the roasted bells in extra virgin olive oil that has the flavor of halved garlic cloves infused in it by heating the cloves in the oil.

      My daughter suggested a good way to roast the peppers. Slice the peppers in half from stem to bottom. Get rid of the seeds and stem. Flatten the pepper halves on aluminum foil so that they are all about the same height. Place the rack upon which the peppers are to rest, skin side up, as close to the broiler element as possible. When the skins are charred to to a crisp, place the peppers in sturdy plastic containers (I use saved 3-pound ricotta containers), cover the containers, and allow the charred peppers to steam for about 8-10 minutes.

      Put the peeled peppers in glass jars. Pour the garlic-infused oil over the peppers so that all the peppers are covered. Refrigerate them.

      I personally do not care for peppers that have been jarred in vinegar. The peppers in oil have a wonderful flavor and go well in sandwiches with pepperoni, ham or capocollo, Genoa salami, provolone, Romaine lettuce, onion and tomato on a hoagie roll.

      13 Replies
      1. re: ChiliDude

        I cannot think of a better way to grow bacteria and other aerobic pathogens then to put them in oil and a non sterile environment. Best wishes to anyone that tries this.

        1. re: dk
          Das Ubergeek

          Really? I can think of several. This "NO GERMS IN MY KITCHEN AT ANY COST" thing amuses me to no end... they've been sitting on a platter all night, how is this any worse? Storing them covered in oil would rule out aerobic pathogens since, uh, they'd be covered in oil.

          I put my peppers sott'olio (under oil), but I *never* do the garlic thing because that really is just asking for it. I use Mason jars (it takes all of ten minutes to sterilise them, just boil them for said ten minutes in a gallon of water to which you have added a capful of household bleach, yes, that's right, bleach), pack the peppers in, cover with oil, tap to get the air bubbles out, add oil as needed to the lip, then seal with a new lid. If you're really freaked out, process the closed jar in simmering water for 10 minutes or so. I just put them in the fridge. Frankly, if I'm going to eat them within the next two days I don't bother with this -- I put them in a Tupperware container and cover with oil, then park them in the fridge.

          Don't waste your extra-virgin olive oil on this -- you'll lose the flavour of the oil to the peppers anyway. Plain olive oil works better and is one-third the price.

          1. re: Das Ubergeek

            Sorry, Ubergeek, I meant to say anaerobic.

            1. re: dk

              Yeah... it's the anaerobic ones that will kill you. (Botulism)

              Heat treating, as if you were canning them, would make them safe in oil.

              1. re: sasan

                Pressure canning would make them safe, a boiling water process would only enhance the conditions needed for botulism spores to sprout and grow.

                You cannot can low acid vegetables (or anything but fruit, basically) in a boiling water bath. Doing otherwise is taking a very serious risk with a devastatingly toxic poison. (The toxin produced by botlulism bacteria is literally the most potent toxin currently known to science.) It doesn't kill many people these days, but it can result in months' long hospital stays and possible life-long after effects. Very nasty stuff, not to be taken lightly.

                1. re: MikeG
                  Das Ubergeek

                  Good grief. Yes, if you leave this stuff submerged in oil for two weeks, you might have a problem... but if you're just planning to store it in the fridge for a couple of days, it isn't going to kill you (unless you have a compromised immune system, in which case you aren't going to be storing leftovers anyway).

                  1. re: Das Ubergeek

                    Oh sure, but why can them at all then? Seems to me that canning them in a way that drives air out but doesn't kill the spores is asking for more trouble than leaving them uncanned in the first place. At least there's some oxygen in the jar to inhibit sprouting of the spores (and the subsequent bacterial growth and relase of their toxin.)

                    One note: except in infants, botulism isn't an illness in the sense of pathogenic infection, so the strength of one's immune system is irrelevant. (Our gastric juices take care of the spores and bacteria with no need for immune response per se.) It's just plain poisoning, and with a stunningly potent neurotoxin for which there is no direct antidote.

                    1. re: MikeG
                      Das Ubergeek

                      Because -- assuming you go the two-day route and not the two-week route -- roasted pepper oil is a powerful addition to salad dressings.

                      1. re: Das Ubergeek

                        I'm totally confused at this point.

                        What I'm saying is that boiling water processing low acid vegetables including peppers is asking for trouble. Period. Whether in oil or not. Whether for 2 days, 2 weeks, or whatever (obviously the longer you go, the greater the risk.) 212F just isn't nearly hot enough to destroy Clostridium spores, but it will create an anaerobic environment in the jar. In other words, it's the worst of all possible worlds.

                        So, it's safer to just keep them uncanned, unless you pressure can them. There's still some risk, depending how long you keep them, but at least in their uncanned state, there'll be residual oxygen in the jar and of course every time you open it, new air will get in.

        2. re: ChiliDude
          Niki Rothman

          Don't store them for a long time in olive oil. Watery-based items can develop anaerobic bacteria when stored in oil. If you were to follow proper canning procedures such as high temp heating in oil for a sufficient time, and sterilizing the jar, there would be no problem. But that does not sound convenient in this case. Vinegar or freezing prevents the development of bacteria. But, like a week in olive oil...I'd say that was safe. But a month in olive oil...do not risk it.

          1. re: Niki Rothman

            The peppers are consumed in a very short time. I process only about 5 bells at a time.

            1. re: ChiliDude
              Niki Rothman

              It's all good then. Gotta Love those roasted red bell peps!

          2. re: ChiliDude
            Niki Rothman

            In response to your dislike of peppers stored in vinegar. I would not like straight vinegar either. But dilute vinegar with salt work just as well for preserving veg in the fridge. What I do is boil for 2 minutes, various veg. such as sliced peppers, string beans or mushrooms in a mild vinagrette that contains water, salt and not a whole lot of oil. Then I store for 2 days in the fridge before using. This produces a delicious mild piquancy that is a fine addition to slads, sandwiches - really, your imagination is the only limit, and they keep very well in a container in the fridge ready for use at all times. I do not mix the veg, but prepare and store separately to keep the flavors distinctive. You can also add a smashed clove of garlic, herbs of your choice, a little sugar or a big pinch of red pepper flakes. Just experiment and you'll discover some very delicious and very easy ideas for increasing your vegetable options. I think this method is something every chowhound chef would enjoy having as a standard item onhand in the fridge.

          3. n
            Niki Rothman

            Store them in a vinagrette that has very little oil in it. Actually, you could just use diluted vinegar if fat was really an important concern. If you don't want the vinegar tang, as long as they are not raw you can freeze them.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Niki Rothman

              Totally agreed about the vinegar. You can also stick some herbs in (thyme, basil, etc.) to have a nice marinated roasted pepper that can top bruschetta, be used on an antipasto platter, or put on sandwiches.

            2. j
              Jeremy Newel

              We roast peppers regularly, usually just red bell peppers since the yellow ones turn a rather unappetizing color sometimes. After roasting, skinning, de-seeding and deveining, I cut them into strips, sprinkle on a clove or two of very finely minced garlic, sprinkle with salt to taste, add a splash of best quality sherry vinegar, and a very small amount of oil -- less than a tablespoon of oil for 6 peppers. Toss well to mix.

              I don't use olive oil, as we often eat the peppers straight from the refrigerator. These peppers last easily for a week in the refrigerator, though they do exude a gelatinous bit of juice a few days down the line, this in no way harms the flavor.

              Don't know how long they would last, since they are all gone by the end of the week.

              1. Why not make some bell-pepper/tomato pasta sauce and freeze it?

                1. OMG. I have to say that really, all the look-how-smart-I-am commentary about the various workings of bacteria, etc., gums up this thread to a terrible degree. Never mind the bickering over it. I came here to find out how to best preserve roasted peppers in oil. I am going to go find a credible source that doesn't sound like a who's on first sketch. This just seems ridiculous. People preserve peppers all the time, I cannot imagine they all do so in some NASA approved lab of the future. I mean, yes some bacteria do nasty things and you have to be careful but seriously, this degree of bickering and pointless extras made the whole thread useless. If there is a disagreement about methods, why not state your case once and use a reference source? I now have to go find someone who knows what they are doing anyway. I feel bad for the original poster.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: beagles8mydough

                    you know this is a six year old thread, right?

                    1. re: magiesmom

                      so? It's still here isn't it? I still found it when I needed an answer and I would guess so do countless others.

                  2. I found this, for anyone wanting an answer to the same question I ended up here to find.... imagine, years later people still need answers to cooking questions..

                    from a site called honest-food

                    I’ve developed a method inspired by an obscure English book by Nora Carey called Perfect Preserves. Carey uses a hybrid pickling, sott’olio method to keep her peppers delicious through her British winters. I’ve adapted it a little to reflect the hotter California climate.

                    Makes about 2 pints.

                    Prep Time: 35 minutes

                    Cook Time: 45 minutes

                    8 red peppers, or really any colored peppers
                    2 tablespoons olive oil
                    1 cup vinegar (any kind)
                    Kosher salt
                    Canning jars
                    A chopstick or butter knife
                    First wash, dry and then lightly oil your sweet peppers. You can do this with hot peppers, too, but be sure to use thick-walled varieties such as jalapenos.
                    Roast your peppers. Ideally this is over a smoky wood fire, on a grill. Second choice is a gas grill, third an open burner on a stove. Alternatively, arrange your peppers on a broiling pan and broil them. No matter what your heating method, you will need to turn your peppers from time to time as the skins char and blacken.
                    When the peppers are mostly blackened, remove them to a paper grocery bag and roll up the bag to seal in the steam. You want to steam the peppers in their own juices. Let the bag sit for 20-40 minutes.
                    After the peppers have cooled and steamed, take them out one at a time and remove the skins, stems and seeds. Have a little water running in the sink so you can wash your hands off periodically. Do NOT run the peppers under the water, as this robs them of flavor.
                    Once each pepper is cleaned — get as many seeds out as you can! — drop it in a bowl. Do all the peppers before proceeding.
                    Once all the peppers are cleaned and in the bowl, get a shallow bowl or small casserole pan and pour in some vinegar. I use red wine, cider or sherry vinegar for red peppers (sherry when I want them to be Spanish, cider for Portuguese, red wine for Italian or Greek) and white wine for green peppers.
                    Dredge each pepper through the vinegar a few times to get it good and coated. Place it in another bowl. Do this for all the peppers.
                    Sprinkle the bowl with all the peppers with kosher salt. Gently mix the peppers together like a salad. Sprinkle a little more salt and repeat.
                    Sprinkle a little salt into the bowl with the pepper juice — the original bowl.
                    Gather canning jars and pour a little vinegar into each one; enough to cover the bottom of the jar.
                    Pack in the peppers, leaving about 1/2 space at the top.
                    Use a butter knife or chopstick to run down the sides of the jars, releasing air bubbles. You will notice the level of liquid drop. Fill it with the salted pepper juice — but still leave room at the top of the jar.
                    Once the air is out to the best of your ability and the vinegar-pepper juice it right at the top of the level of the peppers, pour in olive oil on top of everything to a depth of 1/4 inch.
                    Screw the lids on the jars and you’re done. No sealing needed, although I sometimes place the jars in a hot water bath for 10 minutes just in case. I have not noticed a big difference either way.
                    Once you open a jar, however, keep it in the fridge. It will last a year, although the peppers will soften over time.