The Easiest Way to Peel Roasted Peppers

Roasted red peppers are silky and sweet, but the tough, scaly, charred skins are not particularly enjoyable, so to speak. And, even if they don’t have that tough thin skin, they often flake off and crumble into little black specks of charred plant matter that you may not like. Fortunately, roasted peppers are very easy to peel – you just need to cover them for a moment.

How you cover them is up to you. I usually drop them in a bowl and seal them with plastic wrap, but a sealed paper bag and a pot or Tupperware-style container with a lid work well. Once the peppers are coated, they steam on their own, which weakens the skin so that you can rub them right away with your hands or a paper towel if you’re worried about getting your hands dirty. (If you want to convey that super smoky flavor, you can peel them in a bowl of water, then use that water as a smoky broth .)

They don’t need to be covered for that long; you just want them to be cool enough to deal with. For the two poblanas I grilled this weekend, 15 minutes was enough, although it could take you a full half hour if you chose all the nibbles (which is almost 37 cups of pepper).

When they are cleaned, they are ready to go. Chop them up and add them to sauces, salads, salsa, grilled meats, or anything else that you think would improve their sweet and smoky taste. (I used my fried poblanos to make fried hollandaise poblano this weekend, which I highly recommend. Just mix the chopped peppers with a couple of egg yolks in a food processor, then drizzle with ghee.)

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