Sweet Pepper Paste (Massa de Pimentão)
Massa de pimentão (pronounced “ mah-ssah de pea-meant-ow”) is a sweet yet salty pepper paste made from salt cured red bell peppers. It’s found throughout Portuguese cooking and is used as a base for sauces and stews, as a marinade for meats or fish and it is also used as a condiment.
If you’re planning on preserving this, leave the garlic out and just add fresh garlic each time you use the paste.
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- 6 large red bell peppers
- 2-3 tablespoons coarse salt
- 3 cloves of garlic
- ¼ cup (295 ml) olive oil
Cut the peppers into about 1 inch (2.5 cm) thick strips.
Place a layer of pepper strips into the bottom of a bowl and generously sprinkle with salt.
Repeat with the rest of the pepper strips, salting in between each layer.
Cover tightly with a towel and leave out at room temperature for at least 12 hours.
Put the peppers into an oven safe dish or on a baking tray to slow roast for 1 ½ to 2 hours in the oven.
Remove the peppers and cool to room temperature.
Place the peeled pepper strips and peeled garlic cloves into a food processor or blender.
If a food processor is unavailable, use a pestle and mortar or other tool to grind the peppers into a paste.
Add the rest of the oil to the pepper paste and blend for another minute or until smooth.