Warm Feta and Roasted Red Pepper Spread

ImageOn a whim last fall, we roasted red peppers for the very first time. Actually now that’s a lie.  I did spend a day several years ago with a friend and her family as they invited me to their family ritual.

Although having the roasted treat all winter was wonderful what I remember most was how delightful the day was.  A beautiful sunny early autumn day, gathered around the charcoal burning bbq, enjoying big Italian sandwiches, with two generations talking and laughing and sharing stories.  If your family participates in this fall routine you know the memories that are made and shared.  You also know how everyone comes together and has a job to do.  One can witness the connection within a family when there is a common purpose.

I embrace emotional eating!

So, last fall we started the same tradition.  With the crispness of a early fall evening we fire up the outdoor fire pit and get at ‘er.  Talk about engaging your senses.  There is the smell of the fire and the peppers as they blacken.  You can observe how they get puffy as they inflate with the heat.  Both the blackening and inflation make the sweetest hissing noise.  One person manages the flipping and passing along of the prepared pepper to the cooling rack the other gets the honor of removing some of the skin.  This in itself is such a ooey gooey delight.  For what the peppers will lack in nutrition due to the heating process, will surely make up with hands of love.

I’d like to share a recipe with you that, whether you use your own grilled peppers or store bought, is very good.  You will however notice a substantially different and more flavorful dip/spread with homemade.  We made it for the first time to enjoy on a recent camping trip, sealed it in a jar for storage and while camping warmed it up while wrapped in tin foil; a warm lunch with pitas.

As with most of my recipes, it’s been tried and tested:

*Make a double batch and keep some tucked in the freezer.
*It’s a great vegetable dip.
*Kids love it and school lunch friendly
*With the holidays to soon be upon us, who doesn’t like a homemade food gift?
*Impromptu holiday entertaining, if frozen, thaw and your ready
*Make it gluten free by substituting the bread crumbs for your favorite gluten free product

Warm Feta & Roasted Pepper Spread 

50 ml     dry bread crumbs
125g      drained,Feta cheese, broken into chunks
250ml  drained roasted red peppers
1              crushed clove of garlic (we double)

In a food processor, or tall cup with immersion blender, puree everything until smooth.  You can either place in jar for freezing or continue to consume immediately by preparing a oven proof dish.  Butter the dish and bake in a preheated oven at 350F.  The edges will turn golden brown, about 20 minutes.

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