Fri, 18 January, 2019
The legend says that one in ten Padron peppers is chilli-class hot; the other nine being mild, tender and sweet. I have to say I have eaten easily several dozen padrons over the years and not one of them made me choke and gasp. What a con. It’s only stoked up so you buy and eat more and more padron peppers.
Which is not a big hardship. They are an overlooked tapa, possibly because people are worried the whole pile of dark, charred green pods will turn out to be seasoning rather than a dish. Or maybe they just don’t know and think these are chillies. Or they wonder whether the seeds and all are edible or you are supposed to dissect each little pepper in order to de-seed them. All three were my worries.
Absolutely no need to be afraid of padrons: they are mild, they are wholly edible except maybe for the stems; and they keep disappointing me with the promised one in ten. Completely easy to prepare too – probably the simplest tapa to make at home. Just blister them in a hot pan with olive oil and salt; dish out some slices of serrano ham next to the peppers and your exquisite Spanish feast is ready.
padron peppersServings: 2-4Time: 10 minutes
- 200g Padron-style small green peppers
- 1 tbsp. groundnut oil
- fine sea salt
- olive oil
- salt flakes (optional)
1. Wash and pat dry the peppers. Heat up the groundnut oil in a frying pan large enough to fit all the peppers in a single layer, until slightly smoking. Place the peppers in the pan and fry them without turning for about 3 minutes, until they start to blister.
2. Shake the pan and toss and turn the peppers. Continue to cook, shaking occasionally, until all the peppers are blistered more or less all over and feel soft and wilted. Season generously with sea salt.
3. Remove them onto paper towels to drain, then transfer to a serving bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt flakes, if using, or more fine salt and serve.