This appetizer is very much a modern Israeli Creation, bridging traditional Middle Eastern and contemporary European styles. It is delicious served with slices of very fresh bread or wedges of flat bread.
3yellow (bell) peppers, cut into bitesize pieces
6garlic cloves, chopped
400g/14oz can chopped tomatoes
5ml/1tsp fresh thyme leaves, or more to taste
large pinch of sugar
2–3capers, rinsed and drained
15ml/1tbsp chopped fresh parsley, or more to taste
salt and ground black pepper
fresh thyme, to garnish (optional)
Put the sun-dried tomatoes in a bowl and pour over boiling water to cover. Leave to stand for at least 30 minutes until plumped up and juicy, then drain and cut the tomatoes into halves or quarters.
Heat the olive oil in a pan, add the peppers and cook for 5–7 minutes until lightly browned but not too soft.
Add half the garlic, the tomatoes, thyme and sugar and cook over a high heat, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is reduced to a thick paste. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the sun-dried tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, capers and the remaining chopped garlic. Leave to cool to room temperature.
Serve the salad at room temperature, heaped into a serving bowl and sprinkled with chopped fresh parsley. Garnish with thyme, if you like.