BENGALURU: I started my career 15 years ago as a trainee chef in Bengaluru. It was a small restaurant but the experience taught me a lot. The city has also gradually changed from being a quite place known for its greenery to an IT hub and we were exposed to cuisines from all over the world. I was lucky enough to be trained under the best Italian and French chefs. I have worked in this city for a few years now and have had several competitions with my colleagues to bring out the best dish during the food trials in various restaurants.
The dish that I am sharing today came to my mind during one of the food trials. Red bell pepper was often used by many departments in the kitchen to either make a salsa dip or salsa salad. I was always fascinated by the flavour you get after barbecuing red bell peppers. After that I always wanted to make a burnt barbecued red bell pepper sauce with Indian spices.
After preparing the sauce I tried adding it to different types of cuisines and dishes but the one that stood out was a burnt bell pepper chilli Margherita pizza. The way the cooked pepper and cheese played with your palate was perfectly balanced and almost felt like they belonged together.
Red Bell Pepper Sauce Ingredients
- Red Bell pepper -.500 Gm Oregano- 10 Gm
- Cumin Powder - 5 Gm Fresh Red Chili - 5 gm
- Salt - 5 Gm Coriander Powder - 5 Gm
- Onion -10 Gm Garlic - 5 Gm
- Olive Oil-15 Gm Water-50 Ml
1. Heat oven to 200C/180C. Place the peppers and Red chilli on a baking tray and roast in the oven for about 45 mins until the skins are blackened. Remove from the oven and putinto a plastic bag - this makes them sweat and the skins slip off more easily. When cool enough to handle, peel off the skins with your fingers. Slice the peppers open, pick outand discard all the seeds and membrane, then roughly chop the red flesh.
2. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan. When hot, fry the garlic and shallot for a few mins. Add the chopped peppers, Cumin Powder, Coriander Powder, and continue to fry for a few mins, stirring to combine everything. Add the Water, bring to the boil, then allow it to reduce a little.
3. Pour the contents of the pan into a blender and whizz until smooth. Adjust the seasoning to taste. Depending on the ripeness of the peppers, you shouldn’t need any sugar - but if they retain a slightly bitter flavor, return the sauce to the pan, add sugar to taste and let it dissolve over the heat