This is getting to be a habit. Another gathering of friends and another request to bring an appetizer. “No meat and no cheese please, and make sure the appetizer is “finger food.” OK, I’ll take the challenge.
I’ve been thinking about these stuffed pepper roll-ups and they fit the bill.
Roast yellow and red peppers right atop the flame on your stove or in the oven. Clean the roasted peppers and cut them into wide strips. Whip up imported Italian tuna packed in olive oil with chopped anchovy and capers, stuff the pepper strips and you’re done. If you don’t want to roast your own peppers, use store-bought roasted peppers in a jar. You’ll be done even faster and they’re almost as good.
Oh, I forgot the “finger food” part. Just cut each pepper roll in half and add a toothpick. You’re all set. No fork needed. Usually I serve the whole pepper roll-up as part of my antipasti platter. I always have forks on my table.
The meaty, sweet peppers are a mellow wrapper for the zesty tuna stuffing. I always eat more than one.
The tuna stuffing makes a fantastic panino or use it as a crostini topping too.
- 2 red bell peppers
- 2 yellow bell peppers
- 2 6-ounce imported Italian tuna packed in olive oil, drained
- 2 tablespoons EVOO
- 2 anchovy filets, chopped
- 1 tablespoon capers, chopped
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons mayonaise
- 1 tablespoon fresh Italian flat parsley, chopped and more for garnish
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- You can roast the peppers on the top of a gas stove or under the boiler.
- If using the stove top method, place a pepper directly over the gas flame until the skin is wrinkled and slightly charred all over. (I use all my 4 burners and char at least 4 peppers at a time and use long tongs to turn the peppers to char them evenly.)
- Or, place the peppers on a baking sheet and under the broiler on the high setting, place the peppers on the top shelf under the broiler. Turn the peppers until their skins are wrinkled all over and slightly charred.
- Put the blackened peppers in a paper bag or on a plate covered with a bowl. Set the charred peppers aside to cool.
- When cool enough to handle, rub the charred skin off with your hands.
- Cut the pepper in half lengthwise and remove the stem, core and seeds.
- Cut off the top and bottom to even off the pepper and lay out the pepper flat on a work surface. Use a knife to scrape off any skin or seeds that you missed.
- Cut the half pepper in half again. You want strips about 2-inches wide.
- Set the pepper strips aside while you make the filling.
- Put the tuna in a bowl. Break the tuna into very small pieces.
- Add the EVOO, anchovy, capers, parsley, vinegar, mayonaise and mustard to the bowl and mix well with the tuna. The mixture should be whipped almost into a paste consistency.
- Try the stuffing and add salt and ground pepper to taste. Mix well.
- Lay the pepper strip flat inside facing up and put a tablespoon of the tuna stuffing at one end.
- Tightly roll up the pepper strip.
- Place the pepper roll-ups on a serving platter. Drizzle with EVOO and sprinkle the chopped parsley evenly over the rolls. (If you serve this as finger food, omit the EVOO drizzle, cut the roll in half and insert a toothpick to hold the roll together.)
- Serve slightly chilled or at room temperature.