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David Lissner
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Eat this! Red bell pepper, ripe and mellow

Chicago Q's roasted peppers.

Chicago Q's roasted peppers.

What it is: Fresh red bell peppers (and the whole gamut of colors from yellow and orange to purple) are the ripe form of Capsicum annuum. The hollow bell-shaped peppers are green when immature.

Lee Ann Whippen

Lee Ann Whippen

Where it comes from: Bell peppers originated in Mexico, Central America, and South America, where they’ve been cultivated for thousands of years. Christopher Columbus and his crew discovered them in West Indies in 1492.

What to do with it: Red bell peppers add a mellow flavor to all kinds of dishes. They can be used raw or cooked. At Chicago Q on the Gold Coast, Chef Lee Ann Whippen roasts and stuffs them.


Chicago Q’s roasted red peppers
Chef Lee Ann Whippen

1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped
1 red onion, peeled and finely chopped
10 green onions, finely chopped
3 celery stalks, finely chopped
1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1 poblano pepper, finely chopped
1 pound Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
2 cups dry cornbread crumbs
2 to 3 eggs, lightly beaten
Salt and black pepper to taste
6 red bell peppers, lightly roasted, seeded, cut in half

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Combine the carrot, onions, celery, chopped bell pepper and poblano pepper.Add cheese and cornbread crumbs. Stir in the eggs and salt and pepper to taste.

Stuff the mixture into the 6 red bell pepper halves. Bake 15 to 20 minutes. Finish until golden brown under the broiler. 6 servings.

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