Friday, 25 July 2008


Now that I've eaten my lunch, I thought I'd tell you how good it was. Isn't that considerate of me?

Actually, I've been off sick since Wednesday, and today the doc told me "It's a virus" which was strangely gratifying, even though there's nothing he can offer by way of treatment. I've not been at death's door, but the symptoms, remarkably like a hangover, came and went, so that on Wednesday morning I came home from work, quite unable to concentrate, and since then have felt as bad or worse numerous times, but equally, there have been times I've felt pretty much OK and guilty at not being at work. Sorry about the long sentence; I should have issued a Safety Warning. But then, if you'd done the Risk Assessment you obviously should have done before starting to read, you'd have been prepared. Sorry again, verging on the facetious here.

I'll just point out for the record, that it definitely wasn't a hangover. The symptoms appeared on Tuesday evening, and were enough to make me unusually restrained in the alcohol department ever since.

So lunch was roasted red peppers with Vignotte cheese. It's just the standard RRP recipe and I added the vignotte because I found it flexing its muscles at the back of the fridge. After I cut said muscles off, there was plenty left for this. It worked well, but I think many cheeses would have done just as well. Stilton comes immediately to mind.

Choose a box-shaped pepper if you can, so when you cut it in half, both halves will stand up. Mine was a normal triangular one, so one half fell over. Yellow or orange is fine, but don't try it with green. Just doesn't work.

Leaving the stalk on helps them maintain their shape. After removing the pips, chop some tomatoes into each, to more or less fill each. Scatter finely chopped garlic and anchovy over the tomato. I find anchovy rather tough going, so split a quarter of a fillet between the two, but you can use more. Salt and pepper, of course, and some chunks of cheese. The original recipe specifies a droodle of good olive oil, but the cheese makes that unnecessary.

Oven on quite hot, say 180°C for half, maybe 3/4 of an hour; keep your eye on it.

Serve with a nice glass of, well I had Pouilly Macon Macon Fuissé, so more or less any classical French chardonnay, I'd say would be fine, but equally, a decent Tourraine would go well, or a light-bodied red, maybe a Saumur, lightly chilled.

Of course, I'd forgotten, being ill, to make bread, but fortunately was able to wander over the road and steal some from Lorna and Richard. They'd have given me some, had they been in, but they weren't. It's a real privilege to have friends like that.


DJ Kirkby said...

Oooh Rob, hope you are better soon. There is a nasty virus going round at the moment! I make my roasted peppers with risotto,onion, celery, feta and carrot. Going ot try your recipie next time. Yum.

Rob Clack said...

Thanks DJ, and I am and am not feeling better. It's weird. After I got back from the doc's in the morning I improved to the point where I was feeling guilty at not being back at work, and stayed fine all day, until about 5. Then suddenly I felt as bad as ever and had to go back to bed. I dragged myself out to go shopping with J (rather than put it off until today (Sat)), but really didn't start to feel much better at all until about 10.

Now here I am on Saturday morning, feeling fine, but not at all convinced I'll stay that way all day. I find it unusual to bounce so quickly between extremes.

Hope you enjoy the peppers.

Sparx said...

Now, where did you find Vignotte? It's such a great cheese and so very hard to find...!

Rob Clack said...

It is a great cheese, isn't it? We're really fortunate, that our local farm shop has expanded over the years and now has a creditable deli counter - 4 or 5 different hams, 6 or so salamis and a smallish, but constantly changing selection of cheeses. Fortunately Vignotte is generally there. Along with St Agur. And Dolcelatta (sp?) and so on.

A Mother's Place is in the Wrong said...

Your recipes are always so yummy and so simple. I really am going to do this one - probably for my (extremely lucky) students! Thanks. M xx