Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Roasted Red Pepper and Feta dip

This dip was mainly inspired by Htipiti, which is a Greek spicy pepper and feta dip that I first encountered at a Greek restaurant a few months ago and loved. I looked it up online but could only find two recipes, and while they both looked good, neither of them actually had you roast the peppers and for some reason, I really like roasting peppers. So I created my own Htipiti variation, and it turned out to be quite delicious!

From what I gathered from my online research, it seems Htipiti is generally quite spicy. In fact it is usually made with only hot peppers. I had a lovely bunch of sweet red peppers at hand, so that's what I used, but I added some crushed chilli pepper to give everything a bit of spice, and you can certainly add more if you like your food hot!

You will need:
4 largish red peppers
125 g feta
One red onion
A spoonful of olive oil
A couple spoonfuls of lemon juice
A small bunch of parsley
Crushed chilli pepper

Preheat the oven to 180º C/355º F. While the oven is heating up, wash and dry the peppers and place them on a foil-lined baking sheet.

Once the oven is hot, put the peppers in and let them roast for about 30-40 minutes (depending on their size), turning them every so often so they cook evenly.

When the skin of the peppers is all black and crinkly, take them out of the oven and wrap them up fairly tightly in the aluminum foil (if the sheet they were roasting on isn't big enough, place another one on top).

While the peppers are cooling, prepare the other ingredients. Chop up the onion and wash and then tear or chop the parsley. Put the onion and parsley in a bowl and drizzle with the olive oil and lemon juice. Add the salt, pepper, and crushed chilli pepper, and stir well. Let sit for at least 15 minutes.

Once the peppers are easily handled (probably give them about 15-20 minutes), unwrap them from the foil and peel off the skins. Use a knife to scrape out all the seeds and any long white fleshy bits. Chop up the remaining pepper flesh and then place it all in a bowl and mash up thoroughly.

Add the onion-parsley mixture to the peppers and then crumble up the feta and mix it in too. Stir everything until it's well mixed and either serve immediately or place in the refrigerator to eat later.

I baked some pita to go with mine, adding a few cucumber slices for good measure!

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