Sweet Pepper Mash

You know those fresh veggies and herbs you love to eat? Make them into a concoction that you can spoon onto your plate or over your steak or potato or cooked vegetables, beans, heck... anywhere it´ll add flavor. Sometimes it is served warm, other times cold. It all depends on what you learned and how you like it served. Not unlike Pico de Gallo, but not as spicy.

As I am an unrepentant lover of peppers, both sweet and piquent, my particular take on Pepper Mash is chock full of sweet peppers, garlic and one or several chile peppers.

These sweet peppers in red, orange, and yellow retain color well as they ferment. I like to use the mini bell peppers, but you can use the full size ones. All that bright color just adds to the appeal. The batch pictured here is over a year old and more than half gone. It preserves very well in the fridge and a large batch will last a very long time.

It is similar to Recaito and Sofrito except those are used at the beginning of cooking a dish. This may be used like that, or as a condiment at the table.

This batch does not include any herbs, but I encourage you to work some into your recipe. Cilantro, Parsely, Basil, or Oregano all add delight. Dry herbs may also be added. They will also enhance the colorful appeal of the condiment and better preserve the color of the peppers.

The batch pictured right is still fermenting as I write this.

  • 2-3 .5 lb. bags of sweet mini peppers, cut into chunks

  • 2 generous cloves of crushed garlic

  • 2 or three TSP of dried oregano

  • 1-2 TBSP of Natural Salt

These peppers produce copious broth when lightly salted and set out at room temperature. It is likely that you will need to discard some brine during fermentation, or it will overflow the jar.

If you like other herbs, dried or fresh, then go for it. Fresh green herbs will add to the color and enhance the color preservation of the peppers.

Cut the peppers in half and discard stems and seeds. Cut them into 1 inch pieces and place them in a bowl and salt them. Do this in layers and add the crushed garlic and your herbal condiment as you go. Let this concoction rest at room temperature for an hour or more. If you are going to leave it for several hours or overnight, you may want to cover with plastic wrap to keep the aromatics where they belong.

Pack into an appropriate sized mason jar, seal, and ferment from 10 - 30 days. You can taste and decide how vinagre-y you want them. Keep going until you really like the flavor. I chop them in a food processor before storing them in the fridge.