barely adapted from My Berlin Kitchen by Luisa Weiss
Music Pairing: When You’re Smiling by Louis Prima
I took a few liberties with this salad, as mentioned. Luisa’s original recipe calls for oil-cured olives, and the parsley to be minced. I always have kalamata olives on hand, so that is what I decided to use. As for the parsley, I think it’s so under appreciated as a “green” in salads, and take any opportunity possible to keep it in larger pieces. If you’re not used to leaves of parsley—the texture can be odd, then you may want to go ahead and mince it as she does. And see my mention in the post about the breadcrumbs, as it’s definitely a game-changer.
When I first made this salad, it was to accompany a hearty beef stew. The second time, I used it to bulk up a simple lunch of sunny-side up eggs. I’ve since taken to using Luisa’s method for roasting peppers, and keep a jar of them in my fridge. I added a smidge to my ribolitta today, and the night before tossed some strips into a noodle stir-fry. Slow-roasted bell peppers are definitely something I’m adding to my “must-have” fridge pantry.
2 to 3 slices stale white bread (I used a 2-inch piece of stale baguette)
1/4 cup plus 1 teaspoon best-quality olive oil
Flaky salt, such as Maldon
3 red bell peppers
3 yellow peppers
1/4 cup kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
3 anchovy fillets, finely chopped
1 cup loosely packed flat-leaf parsley (leaves only), roughly torn
Preheat the oven to 375F.
Line a rimmed baking sheet with heavy duty foil. Place the peppers on the sheet and roast, turning every 10 minutes or so, until they’re blistered and browned all over, about 45 minutes all together. Remove the pan from the oven, and let the peppers sit until cool enough to handle, about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, tear the bread into chunks and give them a whizz in a food processor until they form coarse, panko-style breadcrumbs.
Heat 1 teaspoon of the olive oil in a small skillet. Add the breadcrumbs and season with some salt. Cook, stirring once or twice, until toasted and golden, 3 to 5 minutes. Set the breadcrumbs aside to cool slightly.
Slip the skins off of the roasted peppers, and remove the stem. Cut the pepper in half and use a paring knife to scrape the seeds from the flesh; discard the seeds. Using your hands, tear the peppers apart into slices, and add them to a deep bowl. Add the olives, anchovies, parsley and remaining olive oil. Season with the salt. Toss well to combine.
Spoon the salad onto a serving platter. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs on top right before serving so they stay crisp.