Tag Archives: peppers

Roasted Red Pepper and Walnut Pesto

This red pepper pesto recipe is one that my family requests over and over again. The pesto, once made, can be stored in the fridge (although ours rarely lasts long) and is great for snacking, entertaining, or can pull together a quick dinner.

red pepper pesto recipe

Roasted Red Pepper Pesto Recipe

Adapted from the Vitamix Create Recipe Book 

  • 2-3 red bell peppers
  • 1 head of garlic, divided use
  • 3/4 cup (75 g) walnuts
  • 1/2 cup (27 g) sun-dried or oven-dried tomatoes
  • 2/3 cup (20 g) fresh basil or 1 oz prepared pesto (previously frozen fine)
  • 1/2 cup (50 g) grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) olive oil
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) balsamic vinegar

red pepper pesto recipe

1. Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C). Halve and trim red peppers, place skin side down on baking sheet, lined with a silicone mat, or directly on oven rack. (Energy saving tip: try fitting in a toaster oven.) Slice the uppermost portion of the head of garlic off, so that the tops of several cloves are visible. Reserve the top for later use. Sprinkle with a touch of salt and pepper and a few drops of olive oil. Wrap the garlic in foil and add to the oven. After 20 minutes or so, check on peppers. Cook until the skin starts to blister and darken. Immediately place in a covered bowl or sealed bag so the steam helps loosen the skin. (See this post on Spanish Tuna Stuffed Peppers for a photo of this technique.) Cook garlic for 45 minutes or until soft. Once the peppers are cool, peel of the skin, reserving any liquid.

2. Measure out 6 ounces (270 g) of roasted bell peppers.

red pepper pesto recipe

3. Place in a good blender along with a little bit of their liquid, the roasted garlic, the reserved bits of raw garlic, and the rest of the ingredients.

red pepper pesto recipe

4. Blend. For reference, on a variable speed Vitamix, start on variable “1”, slowly increase speed to “3”, and blend for 30 seconds or until desired consistency.

red pepper pesto recipe

Serving Suggestions:

This is just amazing on bread and makes a great appetizer for entertaining. For a quick dinner, toss over pasta and shrimp. Add any extra roasted peppers, too! (I might add peas next time for a bit of fresh green.)

red pepper pesto recipe with shrimp

“Semi-Homemade” Time Saving Tips:

I have also made this using roasted, peeled bell peppers in the jar from Trader Joe’s. Instead of roasting the garlic, you can just use 2 cloves of raw garlic. I use frozen, peeled, uncooked red Australian shrimp from Trader Joe’s. I usually have a bag in my freezer.

Spanish Tuna Stuffed Peppers

Papa Bird picked a peck of peppers this weekend. Ok, maybe not a peck… To be perfectly honest, we can’t remember what kind of peppers he planted. Perhaps Anaheim or Poblano. But the long peppers were begging to be stuffed and I had a can of sustainably fished, wild pole-caught tuna packed in olive oil. This recipe is my best recollection of a tapa I once enjoyed in a Spanish restaurant. ¡Buen Provecho!

Tuna Stuffed Peppers Recipe (Pimientos Rellenos de Atun)

  • Poblano, Anaheim or similar peppers
  • one can of olive oil packed tuna, drained
  • 1/4 cup of walnuts, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup of olives, pitted and finely chopped
  • green onion, sliced thinly
  • balsamic vinegar
  • pepper
  • paprika

Preheat the boiler to its highest setting. On a baking sheet lined with a silicone mat, broil the peppers until the skin starts to char. Remove from the oven and place the peppers in a bowl, cover with a lid and let sit, covered, until cool enough to handle. The steam and condensation should make the skin easier to peel. Peel and discard the skin.

In a bowl mix the remaining ingredients. Carefully slice an opening in the side of the peppers. Spoon the mixture into the peppers. I garnished the peppers with a balsamic reduction, pomegranate seeds and green onion from the garden. It is traditionally served with crusty bread.