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Jarred roasted red peppers--good?

  • d

Are jarred roasted red peppers as good as (or close to) the homemade kind? If so what brands do you recommend? Any ingredients I should try to avoid?

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  1. I've tried 'em all and Roland is my favorite brand. Not easy to find though. Locally (Boston) Market Basket carries it.

    7 Replies
    1. re: Shaebones

      Asian groceries very often have a wide range of Roland products, though pimentos might not be a big seller there. Since they're a huge brand outside the US, other "ethnic" markets that sell a lot of other imported things may have them as well.

      1. re: Shaebones

        Roland's Piquillos, canned in water, are very good, easily comparable to any home cooked peppers: carefully selected, silky smooth, with a subtle pimento flavor. In NYC, I get them at Fairway.

        1. re: Striver

          Any idea how the Roland's Piquillos compare with the Fairway house brand? I've always bought the latter, but will try the former and do a taste test if you haven't done so already.

          1. re: JoanN

            I've had Fairway's water-packed roast peppers, and while they were OK, the Roland piquillos (don't know if they have more than one type of pepper, but I'm strictly speaking about the piquillos) are more to my taste, both in texture and flavor. Of course, they're also more expensive!

            1. re: Striver

              Thanks. Good to know. Buying the Fairway brand was just knee-jerk for me. Will definitely try the Roland piquillos next time.

              1. re: JoanN

                In general, I found that the canned pimientos del piquillo tend to be of a better quality than the jarred. Look for the ones with D.O. I like the brand Lodosa (not sure if it is available in the US).

        2. re: Shaebones

          J Pace & Sons in Saugus also carries a great deal of the Roland line.

        3. I actually think they're better if you're just eating them plain, unless you can find raw pimentos to roast. I like roasted red bells too, but they taste different and not really what I think of when I think "roasted peppers."

          I'm sure there are other good brands too, but I like Goya myself.

          1. I was recently in the market for these because I wasn't going to have time to do the roasting myself (plus, didn't want to heat up the kitchen like that).

            I don't remember the brand I bought, but I do remember having a hard time finding ones that weren't packed in olive oil (which I didn't want). I think I finally got some in a water/vinegar mix that were good.

            1. The homemade kind are vastly superior to anything you can get in the jar. They are easy to make too. Just burn the whole washed peppers over your gas burners until they are completely blackeded. you will have to move them around to char all of the skin. Plance the cahrred peppers in aplastic bag to steam unitl they are cool enough to handle. Then brush off the skin with your fingers, do not run under the water. When you are deseeding make sure to reserve the juice from the peppers. Add extra virgin olive oil, salt pepper and slivered garlic to the pepper juice. Add sliced peppers and let sit a day before eating to have the flavours blend. Sooooooo much better than jarred.

              1 Reply
              1. re: MV

                Thanks, MV, for your roasted pepper recipe. Mine came out fantastic and I just wanted to say thanks.

              2. I roast mine on my grill or in my broiler, the cooktop does not get spattered and become a mess to clean up. I have bought B&G and the brand I have on hand at the moment (I don't remember buying them, maybe my DH did?) is Dunbar's. They are in olive oil and seasonings. I prefer to season to my own taste.

                1. r
                  Robert Lauriston

                  I prefer to roast my own, but Zergut (a Bulgarian brand) are quite acceptable and surprisingly cheap. Great hot ajvar (spiced red pepper puree), too. Some of their other products are not so great, e.g. "hot peppetizer."

                  Link: http://www.zergut.com/zergut_peppers.htm

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Robert Lauriston
                    Niki Rothman

                    "hot peppitizer" indeed. May not taste zer gut, but you can't beat that name! Actually, I really like the name of the company as well. How do their foods taste? "Zergut!"

                    1. re: Robert Lauriston

                      Zergut has been the best jarred bell peppers I've found. At Jon's markets in the LA area. At Shopper's Corner in Santa Cruz. I like their zesty pickles too!

                      Avoid Trader Joe's jarred peppers. Bought them recently and they were a bit mealy and flavorless.

                    2. FYI - most peppers of this and other types (pepperoncini, etc.) come from europe in monster vats and are sold by various importers to brands like b & g, roland, goya etc. who then proceed to jar and bottle them.
                      the ones that are roasted tend to have a much better flavor and texture than the ones just in brine. personally i look for the long red roasted type over the bell pepper shaped ones.
                      they aren't as good as homemade (remember; the fresher the pepper, the easier it is to peel) but they do quite well in the pinch, especially if you wrap them around a bunch of super salty anchovies.

                        1. re: coll

                          Sorry to be so blunt. I just meant that I really like mine the way I make them, others give me indigestion for some reason.

                        2. n
                          Niki Rothman

                          The most delicious roast red peps are charred,peeled and steeped in evoo. Trouble is, you cannot/should not store them for any length because anaerobic bacteria can develop even in the fridge. The packed in vinegar store bought ones are nowhere near as good but they can be stored refrigerated for a very long time indeed.
                          Personally, my advice is to make the charred ones & put them in evoo in the fridge, but to use them up within, let's say, a week - for safety's sake.

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: Niki Rothman

                            I respectfully beg to differ. Made roasted peppers in Italy with my friend's aunty a few summers ago. She had grown the peppers. We prepared them, covered them with a 1/2" of olive oil and she put them away in her spectacular pantry to eat during the year. Folks have always done this this way in Europe. You must be very careful to avoid contamination: never put your fingers in the jar and ONLY use a CLEAN fork (one you have not put in your mouth or touched)to remove them from the jar.

                            1. re: Miss Claudy

                              I've made my own roasted peppers for many years, and never touch them for a least a week or two after making. Never any problem, and I usually make them for (future) company.

                              1. re: coll
                                Niki Rothman

                                Maybe you ladies are talking about standard sterile canning technique, in which case of course the boiling of the jar would kill any bacteria whether the contents were sitting in oil or water. Or if there is a lot of acidy vinegar or salt involved, that could also prevent the growth of bacteria. But, if you are talking about just charring the peppers and then storing them in plain oil in jars that have not been boiled/sterilized, then what you've got is a disaster waiting to happen. If no one has gotten sick, it's just dumb luck. Or, often people do get flu symptoms or an intestinal upset and just don't associate it with something they may have eaten 2 days ago, the time it can take for bacteria to multiply in the gut enough to cause symptoms. Personally, I'd much rather be safe than sorry with food borne bacteria, not just for myself but for my family. Children are also much more vulnerable than adults, who can develop resistance to many pathogens over time.

                                1. re: Niki Rothman

                                  Nope, my mother in law taught me to make it back in the 70s, and her mother had made it that way since the turn of the century. We do refrigerate it after making, but it doesn't taste perfect for at least a week. Just put it in an old mayo jar. I have a sensitive stomach, so I'd be the first to know if something was wrong.

                          2. While I can't suggest a brand, I can suggest you read the label before buying. For the most part, the imported peppers just have recognizable ingrediants like peppers ... oil ... spices.

                            A lot of the domestic canned roasted red peppers have lots of junk in there like high fructose corn syrup and preservatives.

                            It is not always the case of foreign vs domestic, but usually. Read the label. I've gotten into reading labels lately and the most innocent product like sardines can be a chemical factory in a can.

                            1. m
                              Michele Cindy

                              I think the brand I get is Centos. If that's not it, it has a yellow label,& red writing. The reason I like these so much more then others is that they do not have a vinegary taste. They're just plain roasted peppers, no special seasoning or vinegar is added.
                              Coincidentally, I just through out a jar I had for over a year, last night, they had lost their flavor. Luckily, I had a red pepper and roasted it over the stove flame, always a better choice, but when your just too tired these jarred pepper come in handy.

                              1. Don't know of a good jarred one, but when the peppers come into season, they are so easy to do and store. I blacken mine on the grill outside, but any method given by posters work fine. I then steam, peel and freeze. When I need a roasted pepper, they are so easy to just defrost and use any way I want. Only hard part is making sure you put wax,plastic or parchment paper between each layer of peppers. Hope you find a jarred one you like----

                                1. If you like canned string beans or canned peas,(eeccccch)) you'll like jarred roasted red peppers. I've tried many brands to save work, haven't tried ONE which tasted any better than say, my napkin. You can roast a big load of peppers on your barbecue and put them under oil after you peel and seed them. I do this once a month in the summer with a friend. We get to schmooze and each end up with a huge jar of delicious peppers. I put a mashed anchovy and some chopped garlic in the oil.

                                  1. I have never like the jarred ones. Are there any made just in EVOO? How do you make them at home? I never did it, but want to try.

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: R-NY

                                      The good Spanish pimientos del piquillo are roasted over a wood fire and then canned or jarred on the spot in just olive oil. No preservatives or any thing else added. I find the canned ones are generally of better quality--especially those with a D.O.(denominaciĆ³n de origen) like Lodosa brand.

                                      1. re: butterfly

                                        Butterfly, I always thought Lodosa was a place, not a brand name. I have quite a few cans of Piquillo Peppers that I brought home from Spain. The brand looks to be Dantza but it does have a Piquillo de Lodosa DO stamp; ingredients are peppers, sal, citric acid as preservative. I think that Despana in NYC would stock these. I agree that they are so far superior to any others that it is well worth seeking them out.

                                    2. On a recommendation I saw in an issue of Cooks Illustrated, I bought Greek Gourmet jarred roasted red peppers. I like them a lot, the pieces are whole in the jar and the flavor is as good as I get when I roast them myself.