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Roast Peppers and Chickpeas with Fresh Goat's Cheese

By Darina Allen
A mild and soft fresh goat's cheese, jban, is one of the rare cheeses produced in Morocco.

If you are not keen on raw garlic, you can leave that out.

Serves 4-6

4 fleshy red bell peppers

1 x 14oz (400g) tin of chickpeas

4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Juice of 1 lemon

Salt and black pepper

3 garlic cloves, crushed

3 sprigs of oregano, chopped, or 1 tbsp dried

11oz (300g) fresh goat's cheese

Place the peppers on a sheet of foil on an oven tray under a pre-heated grill, 6-9cm from the grill. Turn them until their skins are black and blistered all over. Alternatively - and more easily - roast them in the hottest oven for about 30 minutes or until they are soft and their skins blistered and blackened, turning them once after 15 minutes.

To loosen the skins further, put them in a plastic frozen food bag, twist it shut and leave for 10-15 minutes. Another old way that has the same effect is to put them in a pan with a tight-fitting lid for the same length of time. When the peppers are cool enough to handle, peel them and remove the stems and seeds. Now cut them into thin ribbons through the stem end.

Drain the chickpeas. Dress them with a mixture of three tablespoons of olive oil, the lemon juice, salt and pepper, two crushed garlic cloves, and about one-third of the oregano; mix well, then gently mix with the peppers.

Mash the goat's cheese with the remaining garlic clove, the last tablespoon of olive oil and the remaining oregano, and shape it into a mound on a serving plate. Arrange the peppers and chickpeas in a ring around it.