Hurry, it’s your last chance before Easter – ’cause these tasty little balls o’ pickled pepper goodness need about a week to sit in their nicely-spiced marinade before you can haul them out to amaze your friends and confound your enemies.
The original recipe I found called for (rather a lot of) fresh cherry peppers, and then pickling them before you go all marinade-y on them, which added another week to the process, and seemed like a lot of bother, so I just buy (nice) jarred cherry peppers to start.
•2 jars cherry peppers – use either sweet or hot, the ‘hot’ isn’t terribly fiery, but the sweet are easier to find
•Provolone cheese, cubed
•4 Tien-Tsin peppers
(or crushed red pepper)
•1/2 red onion, sliced
•6 small cloves garlic
•2 cups olive oil
•2 cups canola oil
•2 tsp Aleppo pepper
•2 tbsp Italian seasoning
Drain the peppers and cut a large slit in each.
Remove the seeds and insert a cube of provolone cheese – the peppers will be all different sizes, so cut your provolone to fit.
Secure the cheese in the pepper with a wooden toothpick and toss in a bowl.
Repeat until you’ve used all the peppers.
Place the stuffed peppers in a lidded jar along with additional cubes of cheese, the onion, garlic, tien-tsin peppers, and three or four bay leaves.
Combine the oils with the Italian seasoning and the Aleppo pepper and pour over the stuffed peppers & stuff in the jar to cover.
Put the lid on – or cover tightly with plastic wrap – and stash in the fridge for about a week to let the marinade work its magic.
BTW – as an option – you could also wrap the cheese with a bit of good pepperoni or prosciutto if you like.
These are quite good on their own for a munchie or as part of an antipasto platter, and the seasoned oil is pretty darned fantastic with a bit of crusty bread; so gather your peppers while you may and get to stuffing ’em – even if Easter weren’t coming, you’ll be having folk over soon enough, and you will want to have these beauties on hand.