Throughout this year, in addition to my regular weekly posts, I will be publishing a monthly Simple Kitchen How To post. These posts will be aimed at enabling readers with some very basic but transformational know-how and skills that they can utilize in creating their own wholesome recipes.
These are cooking techniques that Grayson and I have researched and learned over the past two years, and we use them very frequently in our own kitchen. They are versatile skills that can be used across the board in the kitchen to create a great variety of meals. So grab your notepads and knives and start cooking!
First, a Confession.
I don’t know how to slice a vegetable. There, I said it. Now let me explain.
Several evenings ago as I was preparing for this post, I sat down to show my husband the photos I had taken to demonstrate how to slice a pepper. I was quite proud of the pictures. The lighting was nice. The perspective of photo, creative. But all of my pride came crashing down when Grayson pointed out, “You look like your about to slice your finger off!”
Fortunately, my husband has been perfecting this skill of how to slice a vegetable, in the closet I’m sure because I had no idea he was honing this artistry and sharpening his knife skills behind my back. It must be all those Gordon Ramsey videos he’s been watching.
And so after I did the initial cutting of the pepper, I handed over the knife, and stood back slightly astonished as he gracefully demonstrated for me how to properly hold a bell pepper while slicing it, so as to not slice yourself in the process. My fingers will forever be indebted to him.
One thing I’ve learned about cooking is that the education never ends. I will never “arrive” as a cook. I’m always learning, always developing, always adapting, and always growing. Oh, and sometimes failing along the way. But I am very grateful to be on this journey right alongside my best friend, who just so happens to be a pretty dang good cook.
How to Cut a Pepper with Minimal Waste
1) After washing and drying your pepper, cut off the stem.
2) Hold your pepper upside down on a cutting board, using the now-flat top of the pepper as a base. place your knife blade at the top (well…technically the bottom) of the pepper.
3) Carve each 4 sides of the pepper. You are simply cutting the flesh away from the core and seeds.
How to Slice a Pepper without Losing a Finger
This is the part I needed some assistance from my husband on, so I’ll let him take over:
Keep in mind:
Keep the palm of your hand flat against the cutting board.
Ladies–I found out by experience that if your finger nails are too long, you won’t be able to properly hold the pepper down. You may just need to make a small sacrifice and get the nail clippers out…
How to Pan-Roast Peppers
1) You can leave your peppers in slices, or further chop them into smaller pieces.
2) Heat a cast iron (must be cast iron) skillet over medium heat. After a few minutes, place your peppers into the skillet. You should hear a nice “sizzle” Season with salt and pepper.
3) Cook your peppers for 15-20 minutes. Stir every 4-5 minutes. The goal is to get some very nice black blistering on the peppers, but don’t cook them so long that they turn mushy.
Keep in mind:
Only roast 2 peppers at a time, they need ample space to properly roast.
Don’t add any oil or other liquid! In fact, make sure your peppers are dry before adding them to the pan. Liquid will produce a more sautéed effect than roasted.
How to Use Your Roasted Peppers
These peppers are an extremely versatile ingredient and can lend beautiful color and roasted flavor (and aroma) to almost any dish! For just a few ideas, we enjoy them:
Raising kids stirs something deep in our souls — an innate knowing that our time is finite. Taking my kids outside in creation, I’m discovering how to stretch our time and pack it to the brim with meaning. God’s creativity provides the riches of resources for teaching the next generation who He is and how He loves us. Join our adventure and discover inspiration and resources for refusing rush, creating habits of rest, living intentionally, and making the most of this beautiful life!
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