Olive-Oil Fried Baby Green Peppers (Pimientos de Padrón)

A delectable vegetarian tapas recipe featuring simply olive oil fried green peppers. The slightly spicy Padron peppers are a popular snack all over Spain.

From the book

Rick Stein's Spain by
Rick Stein's Spain
Recreate authentic Spanish dishes at home
A guide to Spain's delicious and diverse cuisine
140 recipes from Rick Stein's hit BBC2 series


This is a popular snack in Galicia and all over Spain: small, bite-sized green peppers from the area around the town of Padrón, a few kilometres south-west of Santiago de Compostela. As I mentioned in the introduction, to me the heart of Spanish food is first-class produce, cooked simply. All you do with Padrón peppers is fry them briskly in olive oil then sprinkle them with sea salt flakes. If I see them on a bar menu anywhere in Spain when they are in season, I will order some - they are just so yummy. It’s also well known that one in every ten or so is more like a chilli than a pepper, which gives everyone a little frisson of anticipation, and really that’s what eating tapas is all about. Sharing.

Serves 4 as a tapas (generously!)


250g Padrón peppers
2 tbsp olive oil
Sea salt flakes


Wash the peppers in cold water and pat them dry.

Place a large frying pan over a high heat, add the oil and leave it to get smoking hot. Add the peppers, cover, and shake them over the heat for 4–5 minutes until their skins start to blister and turn brown. Take care not to overcook them; they still need to be a little al dente. Drain briefly on kitchen paper, transfer to a plate and sprinkle generously with sea salt flakes. Serve straight away, while still hot.

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