Recipe: Broccolini with roasted pepper relish and feta

Published: Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 4D

Serves 4 (small-plate servings)

Broccolini is a great alternative to broccoli; the stalks are thinner, so it needs less time to cook. It's also mellower in flavor.

The relish can be made, covered and refrigerated up to a week in advance.

Adapted from "Mike Isabella's Crazy Good Italian."

Note: Toast the nuts in a small skillet over medium heat, shaking the pan often to prevent burning, for 7 to 8 minutes or until they are fragrant and browned.

INGREDIENTS

For the relish:

2 large red bell peppers (may substitute 3/4 cup diced jarred roasted red bell peppers)

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for roasting the peppers

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for roasting the peppers

1/2 cup walnut halves, toasted and chopped (see note above)

3 pickled Peppadew peppers, finely chopped

1 pickled red cherry pepper, stem and seeds discarded, finely chopped

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

For the broccolini:

2 tablespoons kosher salt

16 stalks broccolini (12 to 16 ounces)

For serving:

1/4 to 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

INSTRUCTIONS

Position an oven rack in the second-highest position; preheat the broiler. Brush the bell peppers with oil and season them lightly with salt. Place them on their sides on a baking sheet, leaving about 3 inches between the tops of the peppers and the broiler flame or unit, and broil for 5 minutes on each side. This should take 20 to 25 minutes. The skins will become charred and the flesh soft. Place the peppers in a heatproof bowl; cover tightly with plastic wrap. Let them sit for 20 minutes.

Finely dice the pepper flesh, discarding the skin, ribs and seeds, and transfer it to a medium bowl. (The yield is 3/4 cup.) Add the walnuts, Peppadews, red cherry pepper, 1/4 cup olive oil, vinegar and 1/2 teaspoon of salt, stirring to incorporate.

For the broccolini: Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil with the salt in a large pot over medium-high heat. Fill a large bowl with ice water.

Trim 1 inch from the end of each broccolini stem and discard it. Add the broccolini to the boiling water and blanch for 1 minute, then transfer to the ice water until thoroughly cooled. Pat dry with paper towels.

To serve, arrange broccolini on a serving dish. Top with pepper relish and feta (to taste).

Per serving: 300 calories, 7 g protein, 12 g carb., 25 g fat, 4 g saturated fat, 10 mg chol., 520 mg sodium, 5 g dietary fiber, 6 g sugar.

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