10-12 red bell peppers
1 clove garlic
2 cups Chicken Stockor vegetable stock
1 cup Water
2 Bay Leaves
1-2 red birds eye chillisoptional
1 tablespoon Brown Sugar
200 grams shitake mushrooms
extra virgin olive oil
sea salt flakes
freshly ground black pepper
Although peppers, (capsicums) really don’t come into their own until spring, this is a dish that is too good to wait for, try it around the end of winter as that is when the first Capsicums start to appear. The mushrooms add a clever twist on it and the parsley oil adds a bitter to the sweet of the peppers as well as a nice colour contrast.
- This first step of roasting the peppers can be done as far as a day in advance.
- Preheat oven to 200 degrees (390 fahrenheit).
- Lightly coat peppers in oil and place in an oven proof dish.
- Roast peppers 12 minutes turn and cook a further 12 minutes, roast like this until skin is blistered on all sides.
- Remove them from the oven and transfer to a large bowl and wrap tightly with cling wrap and allow to stand for at least half an hour.
- Once the peppers are cool, peel and seed them discarding both skin and seed and keeping the flesh, this can be a little frustrating, cleaning them under running water will make it less frustrating but will also wash away some of the flavour.
- Soften onions in a little olive oil in a med-large pot over medium-high heat.
- Once onion starts to soften add the garlic and chillies and cook a further 3 minutes.
- Add the peppers and brown sugar and continue to cook a further 3 minutes.
- Add a good splash of wine and turn up the heat to help evaporate the alcohol and cook for another couple minutes and add the water, and bay leaves.
- Bring to the boil and reduce to simmer for 30-40 minutes.
- To a food processor or blender add the parsley, ¼ cup of olive oil, a pinch of salt and pepper and puree until smooth and green.
- Once the soup has cooked blend with a stick blender until smooth (be careful not to splash as the soup will be very hot).
- If the soup is too thick add a little more stock or water.
- Taste for seasoning and set aside to keep warm.
- Sautee the shitakes over high heat in a liberal pour of extra virgin olive oil until golden and crispy, approx 5- 10 minutes and season with salt and pepper.
- Drain briefly on paper towel.
- Serve the soup with the mushrooms scattered over and pour the parsley oil over that
- As mentioned the chillies in this recipe are optional as there is plenty of flavour as it is but I like the extra little kick.
- Definitely pair this dish with a white, Pinot Grigio goes well.