Spanish Pimientos de Padrón are a simple yet delicious tapas classic. If you like rustic Spanish cuisine, you can bring a bit of holiday atmosphere into your home quickly and easily. You can serve these little roast peppers as part of a larger tapas buffet or as a delicious, hearty snack. The perfect thing to enjoy with guests over a glass of wine. So if you’re looking for inspiration for your next dinner party, consider Pimientos de Padrón.
What are Pimientos de Padron?
This particular little pepper (Pimiento in Spanish), takes its name from the Spanish town of Padrón in the north-west Spanish province of Coruna. Over time and with increasing popularity, cultivation has also spread to southern Spain. They are also cultivated in Mexico and some South American countries, where the actual origin lies after the discovery of America.
A Galician proverb says: “Padrón peppers: some hot, some not.”
A fun fact about Pimientos de Padrón is that whether a pepper is hot or mild is a kind of Russian roulette. Most of them are mild in taste with a slight piquant bitterness, but one in ten can be quite spicy and surprise the eater.
How to prepare Pimientos de Padrón
This is probably one of the easiest tapas recipes in the world you can find. All you have to do is wash small peppers and toss them in a pan with olive oil until the skin is a nice golden brown color with a rippled surface. It’s not bad or wrong if some of them get a little darker.
They taste fantastic with a good pinch of sea salt. You can easily keep fried peppers in the fridge for a few days and eat them cold.
Traditionally, pimientos de padron are served hot in a pan, sprinkled with salt flakes. Drizzle with a few drops of your best olive oil and freshly chopped parsley to give the vegan tapas the finishing touch. Make sure you have fresh bread ready to serve.
As is often the case, the beauty of Mediterranean cuisine lies simply in quality ingredients that are well prepared.
Where to buy Spanish Pimientos de Padrón?
Due to the increasing popularity of these tasty peppers, they are actually not that difficult to obtain. Look in well-stocked supermarkets or the vegetable section of Spanish delicatessens. Also nowadays you have a good chance to find them in the discount store around the corner.
Padron peppers are actually harvested in mid-May, which is quite early in the season. At this point, the peppers are still quite small, usually no more than four to six centimeters in size. But don’t worry, that doesn’t mean that you can only buy the Padron peppers in a short season. Fortunately, the popular peppers are now mainly grown in greenhouses, so they are available all year round.
if you like our Spanish Pimientos de Padrón, you might also be interested in these dishes:
- Potato rösti with quince and pear jelly
- Spanish chickpeas with spinach
- Korean cabbage pancakes baechujeon
- Pico de gallo – the basic recipe
- vegan cauliflower korma with tofu
- vegan sushi flavored salad
Spanish Pimientos de Padron
- Wash the peppers in cold water and gently pat dry.
- Heat the olive oil in a large heavy skillet.
- Put the peppers in the pan. Not too many at once so they cook more evenly. Cook in portions if necessary.
- Fry for about 5 minutes or until the skin turns brown.
- Remove the pan from the heat and serve immediately with a pinch of coarse sea salt and fresh bread.