Hi. My name is Jeff Tiedeman, and I’m the food editor at the Grand Forks (N.D.) Herald. You can call me Chef Jeff.
I’ve been a print journalist ever since my college days at Moorhead (Minn.) State University. I graduated from MSU in May 1974, starting at the Herald as a sportswriter shortly thererafter and later moving on to the copy desk.
While the biggest part of my job involves copy editing and page design, cooking is my passion, so I relish the time spent doing the weekly food pages and talking with readers about recipes and the like.
With the uncertainty in the newspaper business these days, the Internet has become a place many believe is our future, so I’ve decided to jump in with both feet on the food front, giving blogging a try.
I hope to have something for readers on a daily basis, be it a recipe or two or food tip for the day, although sometimes that may not be possible. And I welcome people to share their food thoughts with me and other Web browsers.
To kick off my blog, I’ve decided to share a recipe sent to me by my stepdaughter, Jessica Week, who lives in Cincinnati with her husband, Ben, and their two children, Naomi and Theo.
In Jessie’s words:
"Here is the recipe for my friend Deanna’s amazing Roasted Red Pepper Soup. It is so simple that it just shouldn’t be this delicious! And red peppers were on sale this week for $1 each! My husband called from the store to make sure I really meant to write TWENTY red peppers down on the produce line. They are so good for you; in the summertime, this soup will be outrageously good with peppers from the farmer’s market. Or from your garden— yeah yeah, don’t rub it in! I’ll have to mark the calendar so we come visit at the exact moment your peppers are harvested."
The recipe as follows:
Deanna’s Roasted Red Pepper Soup
10 roasted red peppers
1 yellow onion, chopped and caramelized
2 cans vegetable broth
1 8-ounce brick cream cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
In manageable batches, toss broth, cream cheese, roasted peppers and onion into the blender or food processor. Liquify them all together. Keep everything cold and just put it all in a pot and microwave a little at a time.
(Original recipe was to blend all but the cream cheese, heat that much up and add the cream cheese right before serving.)
"Deanna says it is also delicious with chicken broth and a bit of lemon juice. Her daughters like Parmesan cheese on top. My family loves fresh hot breadsticks with it."
How to roast red peppers
Wash them off. Cut a circle around the stem, and pull out the stem and seeds. Slice down the side and make some slits so the pepper lies mostly flat. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray and cover it with peppers, skin side up. Drizzle them with olive oil and place the sheet under the broiler until the skin starts blackening — that takes 10 to 15 minutes. Let the peppers cool and soak in their juices for an hour. Remove the peels — they slide right off for the most part.
Here’s some health stuff about red peppers:
They are super Vitamin A sources and are very high in vitamin C and bioflavonoids. They are much higher in beta-carotene than green or yellow peppers and contain vitamin B6 as well as capsaicin, a natural painkiller, which is considered to be useful for arithitic pains. Experts consider red peppers to be especially beneficial against cancer and heart disease. Like all peppers, they also contain lutein and zeaxanthin, which help protect again certain age-related eye problems. And they contain on 32 calories per 4 ounces.
P.S. Check out today’s food page on pasta primavera in the Herald or view it online.