Pound for edible pound, fresh peppers are increasingly expensive. Here in St. Louis, the everyday supermarket price ranges from $1.50 to $2.00 a pepper -- per pepper! Demand is high, so sale prices are rare. For a few weeks in early fall, locally grown peppers are plump and plentiful (and cheap, say $.25 each) at the farmers market -- even while the grocery stores are charging the same $1.50 to $2.00 for peppers imported from somewhere. (Wouldn't you know it? This week my local supermarket has peppers on sale for $1 apiece. I bought several!)
So I keep my eyes peeled for pepper products -- and have two to recommend.
JARRED PEPPERS - For $2 to $3, I find jars of (slightly pickled) peppers and jars of roasted peppers. Each jar holds six or more whole peppers, so they'll go a long way. But forget the regular supermarkets for the lower prices. Here I find them at an Italian market (for St. Louisans, Viviano's on The Hill) and at an international market (for St. Louisans, Global Foods in Kirkwood) but of course, you'll need to keep your own eyes peeled. They keep - so it's easy to stock up on a jar or two.
MINI PEPPERS - A two-pound bag of these gorgeous mini peppers was $5 at Costco - and to my wallet, worth every cent. They make great snacks, plus it's also easy to chop one or two for an omelet or garnishing a soup -- so there's little waste. Plus, they're just so darn 'cute', yes?
YOUR EXPERIENCE - What's your experience with pepper prices, both fresh and in 'convenience products' like these I recommend? Are they in your budget?
~ more vegetable convenience products I like ~
~ more sandwich recipes ~
~ from Kitchen Parade, sandwich & cracker spreads, "turn an every-day sandwich into something special" ~
~ one year ago this week, Green Monster Soup, from Simply in Season, a kids cookbook ~
~ two years ago today, Cape Breton Cabbage, cabbage that is "sweet and fresh-tasting" I wrote, just 1 Weight Watchers point ~
~ two years ago today from Kitchen Parade, vegetables with sour cream,
you just know these are good! ~
Time to table: 15 minutes
Serves 1 - as needed
GOAT CHEESE PEPPER SPREAD - per sandwich
1 tablespoon goat cheese
1 tablespoon low-fat mayonnaise
Chopped fresh or jarred red peppers (or sun-dried tomatoes)
Chopped herbs - cilantro or basil or dill, say
Bit of liquid to thin - I used liquid from the pepper jar
Red pepper flakes to taste
Good bread - I used a salty foccacia (for St. Louisans, from BreadSmith)
Smoked ham - leftover from Christmas, Note to Vegetarians
1/2 a roasted/pickled pepper - from a jar
Spinach, lettuce, more fresh basil maybe (not used but recommended)
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