Farmers Market Peperonata

Makes 21/2 to 3 cups. Recipe is from Copper Alvarez, director of Big River Economic and Agricultural Development Alliance, which operates the Red Stick Farmers Market in Baton Rouge.

1/4 cup olive oil

1 large onion, sliced into thin crescent slivers

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 red bell peppers, stemmed, seeded and cut into strips

2 yellow bell peppers, stemmed, seeded and cut into strips

2 orange bell peppers, stemmed, seeded and cut into strips

1 green bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and cut into strips

2 ripe large tomatoes, cut into wedges

1/4 cup slivered fresh basil leaves

Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

French bread or sandwich rolls, optional

Meat slices or sausage, optional

Cheese slices as desired, optional

1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic and sauté until the onion is a light golden brown, about 10 minutes.

2. Add the pepper strips and saute 5 minutes more.

3. Add the tomatoes, reduce the heat to medium-low and cook uncovered until the tomato juices have evaporated, 10 to 15 minutes more.

4. Stir in the basil, salt and pepper.

5. Remove from the heat; serve either warm or at room temperature.

To serve in sandwich: Slice po-boy bread or sandwich roll. Place meat, if desired, on roll, then top with peperonata. Place slices of cheese on top of sandwich half and broil briefly to melt cheese. Serve warm. This is also a good sandwich to wrap in foil and pack for tailgate parties.