Thanks to my dear blogging friend MJ and one of her numerous extremely tempting posts praising green chilli (or rather “chile” as they say in New Mexico), I finally embarked on the roasting adventure too. The process is quick, easy (even without a proper grill) and the ways of using roasted peppers seem countless. After the utterly delicious Chile Spread (see the recipe at MJ’s Kitchen), I decided to create something on my own and experiment with filo pastry rolls. Greek cuisine is not famous for its fiery dishes, nonetheless boldly flavoured feta cheese proved excellent company for roasted chilli! The mixture of the two ingredients is so satisfying, dried oregano was the only seasoning to make this chilli lovers’ treat perfect.
With their three-ingredient filling this filo pastry rolls are ridiculously easy to prepare, but most of you have probably never roasted chilli peppers, so I’ll share some of my impressions of the first batches. As I have mentioned above, roasting chilli is really quite effortless, even if one doesn’t have a grill, the oven broiler being a sufficient tool. As for the peeling, it is much quicker than expected and since, as MJ confirms, roasted chilli freezes very well, it’s a good idea to work with big batches and save some of the summer flavours for cold winter months.
The only problem (if you don’t live in New Mexico or other fiery food-loving regions) might be to find a medium hot chilli variety (even as a big fiery food fan I wouldn’t advise bird’s-eye-chillie or similar super hot varieties here). The only medium hot chilli I can buy here is aci sivri, a highly aromatic Turkish long green variety and it roasts and peels perfectly, so I guess any medium hot chilli will do.
For the detailed instructions and very useful chilli roasting tips, check MJ’s fascinating blog. I bet you will be tempted to try, just like me, lots of her inspiring recipes, most often influenced by New Mexican culinary heritage.
Some of you might have noticed I am a big filo/phyllo pastry fan and try to experiment with it as often as I can. Here are some ideas, in case you wonder what to do with the rest of the package:
Preparation: about 1 hour
Ingredients (makes 6 filo rolls):
6 sheets of filo/phyllo pastry
2 cups (about 500 ml) roughly chopped roasted, peeled chilli peppers
150 g feta cheese
1 tablespoon cracked wheat; this is the TIP I learnt from Katerina (Culinary Flavors), the specialist of Greek cuisine; this tiny amount of cracked wheat absorbs the excessive humidity, but doesn’t change the taste or texture; you can use for example semolina instead
1 tablespoon dried oregano
(1 tablespoon oil)
Preheat the oven to 200°C.
Crumble the feta cheese in a bowl.
Add the chopped chilli and the oregano.
Mix delicately the filling, divide into six equal parts and fill the rolls (one sheet per roll; see the instructions here).
Place the rolls on a baking tray/sheet or a baking dish.
Brush with oil (this is not obligatory) and bake until slightly golden.