I have never refused to share a recipe and am suspect of those who do. But I was tempted once.
The dish was an unusual, dramatic and intensely flavored saute of red bell peppers, flavored with, among other things, almonds, garlic, one anchovy and cilantro. I immediately passed the recipe to a friend who also loves cooking and eating.
After she tried it and loved it, she implored me not to publish the recipe.
“They’ll leave out the anchovy,” she said. “They won’t use cilantro. You watch.” She’s probably right.
And if they’re left out of the dish, of course it won’t be the same. While the anchovy isn’t identifiable, in combination with the other ingredients it adds body and substance to the sauce.
I printed the recipe anyway and continue to fix it regularly. It’s good as a side dish and excellent served over pasta.
RED BELL PEPPER SAUTE
Makes 4 to 6 servings
1/2 cup chopped blanched almonds
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 red bell peppers, cut in 1-inch squares
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 clove garlic, chopped finely
1 anchovy, chopped finely
1 tablespoon finely chopped, fresh cilantro
Toast the almonds in a dry skillet for 10 minutes in a pre-heated 400 degree oven. Set aside. Heat oil in a skillet and saute bell peppers until just tender. Stir in sugar and cook, stirring constantly, until melted. Stir in lemon juice, salt, red pepper flakes, garlic, anchovy, cilantro and almonds.
Ann Heller became the first restaurant critic for The Journal Herald in 1975 and added writing food stories for that paper in 1977. The Journal was merged with the Dayton Daily News, where she remained restaurant critic and food editor until 2006. During that time, she tested and shared hundreds upon hundreds of recipes with our readers. Now we want to share them with a new generation every week on our subscriber website, MyDaytonDailyNews.com.