As I was on my holiday this past month, I had plenty of time to relax. Plenty of time to think and along with that came the feeling of-get ready-slight boredom. Ahh, success! To me, a productive part of a lengthy vacation is that feeling of “what do I do now?” After the arrival, the unpacking, the organizing the first exciting day of exploring a new city or even just laying by the beach. But when I am away for just a few days I still return with that aching, somewhat stressful feeling. Relief, yes, but not the same relief as a week (or two or three) away.
Every year we travel back to Europe to visit Mr. Giggle’s mother in Germany, we are then lucky enough to spend time in his sister’s stunning vacation home in Mallorca. It is always in Mallorca, when we don’t allow ourselves internet or cell phones, that I reach this point. While children might think it’s insane to wantto feel bored, I feel that as the ultimate relaxation point. When I’ve finished all my backlogged work, when I’ve blogged enough, when I’ve run enough and read enough and swam enough to lay in a chair and think “hmmm. What now?” It’s just the best.
And, often, when that happens I cook (shocker). The beauty of my pseudo sister-in-law’s house is that it is chock full of cookbooks. She is an amazing cook herself, and has beautiful books in all different languages. Poring through these is a pleasure I look forward to every year. This year it was a slew of Parisian cookbooks that I fell in love with. And one recipe in particular I prepared to accompany a cheese course after dinner with some friends of ours from Geneva who came to visit. It’s a simple recipe for balsamic braised red peppers, but be sure to use a good balsamic. Nothing too aged and syrupy, but nothing mass produced for grocery store shelves. Trust me, you’ll be glad you did. Oh-and make a double batch. Again, you’ll say “thanks Giggles!”
Balsamic Braised Red Peppers
Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Soy Free, Egg Free, Nut Free
- · 4 large red peppers or 6 small, cored and quartered
- · 3 whole garlic cloves
- · about 1 c. good quality balsamic vinegar
- · 2 T. olive oil
- · fresh pepper and sea salt
1. Place the quartered red peppers, garlic cloves and the balsamic vinegar in a medium pot (a 3 qt. or 4 qt. saucepan will do). Be sure they are covered in the balsamic vinegar, if they are not add more to the pot.
2. Place over the lowest flame and gently cook for 30-45 minutes, carefully turning once or twice to move the peppers all around to cook evenly.
3. Remove from the balsamic vinegar into a glass jar. Pour some of the balsamic sauce over, enough to cover about ½ – ¾ of the peppers and then add the 2 T. olive oil. Generously sprinkle with fresh cracked pepper and sea salt. Gently stir to combine, cover and refrigerate until ready to use (unless you eat them all before then!).