Warm, comforting, sloppy, and ugly.

Hi guys! I’ve been missing you all but since I’m back at work even though my back is hurting as much as ever, I’ve spent most my afternoons konked out on the couch.  But I’ve managed, with the help of some peppery friends, to keep things colorful in my kitchen.

This pepper stew is exactly what home cooking should be—warm, comforting, sloppy, ugly, and something you’d never get in a restaurant.  It’s a barrage of peppers—fresh ones, roasted ones, spicy ones, and smoky ground ones.  If you can get your hands on any fresh ones still (I was surprised to find my local farm was still selling theirs) please make this stew.

Now that the weather’s gone cold, I think we may all need a little pep-me-up.  This is it.  I can’t promise it will cure a bad back, but it sure made me forget about my pains—for the length of dinnertime, at least.

Pepper Stew

adapted from Jamie Oliver

  • 3 pound pork shoulder
  • 2 red onions, peeled and finely sliced
  • 2 fresh small red chiles, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 2 generously heaped tablespoons Spanish smoked paprika, plus a little extra for serving
  • a small bunch of fresh thyme
  • 5 fresh peppers, seeded and sliced
  • 2 red peppers, roasted, peeled and seeded, and sliced
  • 1 30 oz. can whole tomatoes
  • 4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • chopped parsley

Preheat the oven to 350°F.  Score the fat of the pork shoulder in a cross-hatch pattern.  In a large dutch oven add some olive oil and, when hot, the pork fat side down.  Let the fat of the pork render for 15 minutes, until browned.  Remove pork to a plate.

Add chiles, paprika, thyme, and fresh peppers to the dutch oven.  Cook for 10 minutes.  Add roasted peppers, tomatoes, vinegar.  Bring to a simmer.  Reduce heat and add pork back to the dutch oven, pushing it towards the bottom, so that it’s partially covered.  Cover and put in oven.

Cook for about 3 hours, or until the pork is very easily pulled apart with a fork.  Serve with rice or noodles and a dollop of sour cream if you like.

9 thoughts on “Warm, comforting, sloppy, and ugly.”

  1. Aw Robin. Your back? Dammit. >=( I’ll be thinking about you, honey.

    (I’ve been thinking about you a lot anyway because I just started reading Jimmy’s book!)

    Nice stew. Another one for my list.

  2. Sounds and looks perfectly yummy. Perfect food to settle down to on a blustery fall day — I’ll definitely be trying this one — Jean

  3. I love that about Jamie Oliver’s recipes — he throws in garlic and onions skin on, roasts everything in one pan, a haphazard splash of vinegar and oil, and it comes out as one delicious caramelised mess that is so far from something you might see in a fancy restaurant, but so unpretentious and delicious.

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