My family has always had a garden. As a kid, I loved the neat rows of colorful plants. We canned all the fresh vegetables we could, and my job was to line up the jars in our cellar. I organized them by color, so understandably my favorite veggies were the variety of peppers we planted every year. I still love peppers and use them frequently when cooking; hot peppers to add flavor and a kick of heat, or sliced bell peppers for a quick raw snack or tossed on salads. I’m constantly thinking of ways to incorporate them, especially my favorites, like sweet red peppers. My most recent favorite is roasting them with garlic and blending into homemade hummus. There’s something about the flavors melding together: the smoky char of grilled peppers with the distinctive punch of garlic. I can’t get enough.
I usually have to grill or roast the peppers myself, but then I stumbled onto Zergut Sweet Roasted Red Peppers from Bulgaria. The peppers are roasted whole and canned with whole garlic cloves, and I was pleasantly surprised by how firm and fresh they were, not mushy or bland. They were quick and easy to add to the hummus, and so tasty I found myself looking for every excuse to use the rest. I tried them on pizza, in a pasta salad, and sliced with tomatoes and artichokes and tossed in olive oil. To say the least, they were delicious and made it easy to instantly add a splash of color and flavor to a few of my favorite recipes. The Food Channel World Market has recently added many European delicacies to their offerings online. To make flavorful discoveries, like these gorgeous peppers, all it takes is a trip to the market.