Looking for a something a little different to serve at your Labor Day end-of-summer party? How about a traditional Italian antipasto treat: stuffed cherry peppers? You can make them with either sweet or hot cherry peppers and they're easy to put together.
Here's what you'll need:
- A jar or two of cherry peppers, sweet or hot or both as you prefer
- A block of mild cheese: I prefer fontina for stuffing peppers, but provolone is traditional and monterey jack is good, too.
- Thinly-sliced prosciutto
And the method:
- With the point of a sharp knife, cut around the stem of the pepper to remove it. Pull the stem out so the seed cluster comes out with it. Use the rounded end of a butter knife to scoop out any remaining seeds.
- Take a chunk of cheese small enough to fit inside the cavity of the pepper and wrap it in a strip of prosciutto (not a whole slice of prosciutto, just a strip torn from the slice.)
- Stuff the wrapped cheese into the pepper, tucking any loose ends of prosciutto inside the edge of the pepper.
- Repeat until you have made the desired number of stuffed peppers (or until you run out of one of the ingredients!)
I make stuffed cherry peppers a few times a year - whenever we're having a big family get together - as part of a veggie dip platter, but you can put a bowl of them out all by themselves. Keep the jar of pickle juice from the peppers, because if you have leftovers, the stuffed peppers can be dropped back into the jar and, in the pickle juice and kept in the fridge, they'll stay edible for a few more weeks.