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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Friday, November 18, 2011

Peperoncini Peppers

It is quite interesting to me that certain foods are very much regional.  The reason being the growing conditions and local food traditions but in this day and age of globalization, it is still surprising that some foods are only available in certain regions.  When I was growing up the closest I came to a hot pepper was the hot banana peppers the couple I baby sat for grew.  I begged my Mom one summer to help them harvest and she finally caved in even though she was against it.  I loved everything there was about that harvest!  To this day I firmly believe in order to truly love food, you need to get comfortable and knowledgeable to how it is produced.

homemade pizza with pickled peperoncini peppers
During our first visit to our vacation home in the sunny south we ordered a pizza from Papa John's.  It came with a wonderful pickled pepper that I did not recognize which is rather funny given I grow upwards of 30 pepper (5 varieties) plants each year.  When we arrived home in Canada I got curious so did a bit of inquiry.  The pickled peppers were peperoncini, a variety I had never heard of before.  To me they look almost like a cross between a habanero and a banana pepper.  They have a bit of heat mixed with a slight bitterness.  Oh my gosh, they kick pizza up a notch!

I finally found pickled peperoncini in the grocery store so I bought a jar.  That meant of course I had to bake homemade pizza, another excuse to test out my new natural gas oven.  My pizzas usually start out with my favourite pizza dough topped with home canned pizza sauce then the toppings get a bit interesting.  This pizza was topped with a 9 cheese shredded blend left over from making lasagne for hunt camp, tomatoes, broccoli, smoked turkey, pepperoni, and sautéd butter mushrooms.  I served the peperoncini on the side to cut and add to the pizza slices as desired.

Now if I could only find anchovies since I discovered them on a road trip.  I just loved the saltinest and flavour the anchovies imparted to the pizza slices so can't wait to try them at home.   Apparently they are hard to find here (aka none of the local grocery stores carry them) so perhaps I will find them our next trip to the city.  On the other hand you can bet your bottom dollar I will be hunting down peperoncini pepper plants for my new garden.  Jars of home pickled peperoncini peppers are already visions in my mind!

1 food lovers commented:

Kim said...

Eastsie Marios serves pepperochinis in their salad - I love them!