A specialty of the Basque region of France, piperade is based on two summer ingredient staples: tomatoes and bell peppers. The ingredients are cooked in olive oil, but from there the possibilities are endless — meat, chicken or poached eggs can turn the simple sauté into a main dish.
With tomatoes and bell peppers at their most vibrant, try our fresh, easy version of piperade below. Make it into a main dish by serving with seared ahi tuna fillets, cut into thin strips.
Piperade with Mixed Bell Peppers
1/3 cup plus 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 large yellow onions, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and chopped
2 red bell peppers, seeded and chopped
1 1/2 Tbs. chile powder
2 large tomatoes, seeded and chopped
Salt and freshly ground pepper
In a small saucepan, combine the 1/3 cup of the olive oil and half of the garlic over low heat. Cook until the garlic is soft, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside. Once cooled, mash the garlic against the side of the pan with a fork.
In a large fry pan over medium heat, warm the remaining 2 Tbs. olive oil. Add the onions, bell peppers and the remaining garlic; sauté until the vegetables begin to soften, about 6 minutes. Add the chile powder and cook for 1 minute longer. Add the tomatoes and sauté until soft, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat and set aside. Serve right away. Serves 4.