Slice 450g of Romano peppers in half lengthways, then pull out and discard any seeds. Peel 4 plump cloves of garlic, then squash them flat with the blade of a knife.
Heat 100ml of olive oil in a large, shallow pan – I use a 28cm diameter one – then add the peppers. Leave them to cook, covered by a lid, for 8-10 minutes, until they have relaxed and softened.
Wash and thinly slice 700g of small potatoes.
Turn the peppers over and continue cooking for 5 minutes. Lift the peppers out and on to a plate, leaving the mixture of sweet juices and olive oil behind in the pan. Add the garlic and the sliced potatoes to the pan, season with salt and black pepper, then tuck in 3 or 4 sprigs of rosemary. When they are golden on the underside, turn them over and lightly colour the other side.
Return the peppers to the pan, then pour over 300ml of vegetable stock and bring to the boil. Partially cover the pan with a lid and let the potatoes cook for a further 8 minutes or until tender when pierced with a fork. Serves 2
The peppers should be meltingly soft before they are removed from the pan. The juice they make, together with the olive oil, is a wonderfully flavoured liquor in which to cook the potatoes. Keeping the ingredients partially covered as they cook is crucial so that they partly fry, partly steam. The juices in the pan, an integral part of the dish, should be spooned over the potatoes and peppers as they are served.
Try sweet potatoes. The cooking time needs to be lessened somewhat and the potatoes crumble more, but their sweetness is a thoroughly good thing with which to accompany a roast.
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