Taken from Georgio Locatelli’s Made in Sicily, I chose this recipe as the starter for the Supper Club Night – A Taste of Sicily. The recipe is enough to stuff 8 long peppers. The stuffing is made with traditional Sicilian flavourings of sultanas, capers and olives. Just before serving, it is dressed with a drizzling of Saba (also known as Vincotto).
200g pitted whole black olives in brine, chopped
8 long peppers
140g crustless stale bread, crumbled (or pulsed in a food processor)
140g breadcrumbs (made from dry toasting stale bread in a low oven)
2 – 4 garlic cloves, chopped or crushed
60g flat leaf parsley, chopped
75g salted capers, rinsed and drained
Olive Oil and Vincotto to dress
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Centigrade / Gas 4
2. Put the crumbled bread, breadcrumbs, garlic, parsley, sultanas, capers and olives into a bowl and mix in enough olive oil to bind.
3. Cut each pepper in the middle on a diagonal and then stuff each half with the stuffing mixture.
4. Place in an oiled roasting tin, so that the peppers fit fairly snugly (make sure you match the halves and they face each other so that you almost recreate the whole pepper). Sprinkle any remaining stuffing mixture over the top.
5. Drizzle a little more olive oil over the top and bake in the oven for approximately 20 – 25 minutes. The peppers should start to take on colour and feel soft to the touch.
6. When cooked, place two matching halves on a plate (try to place on slightly on top of the other, so that the stuffing is exposed) and drizzle with the Vincotto.
To make ahead
Part cook the peppers for 10 minutes. Take out of the oven and leave to cool and refrigerate until needed. (If making ahead on the same day and you don’t have room in the fridge, they can be left in a cool room until needed). When you’re ready to serve, return the peppers to the oven for another 15 minutes (make sure they are at room temperature or you may have to extend the cooking time).