- Food: Romesco Sauce
- Writer: Lizzie Green
- Content-Type: Food Blog
The sauce Romesco is unforgettably delicious. It’s spicy, robust, and bursting with roasted tomato and pepper flavor.
You already know how much I enjoy sauces, and romesco is one of my favorites.
Romesco began in Tarragona, a city in Catalonia, Spain’s northeasternmost region, which borders France. Tarragona is a port city, and the local fisherman created romesco sauce to spice up the catch of the day.
I like romesco sauce on roasted and grilled veggies, as well as a variety of other dishes.
I know I’ve mentioned it before, but I adore sauces. Sauces have the ability to take simple ingredients like leftover cooked rice and vegetables and turn them into a dinner you’ll enjoy.
I really enjoy sharing sauce recipes from all over the world. Sauces provide insight into the key flavors of different cuisines, and they make me want to travel to try the originals.
Sauces have the ability to transfer you to another location, whether it’s another area of the world or the next best thing in your own kitchen.
As you’ll see, I made a few changes to make this romesco sauce simple to create with common grocery store ingredients in the United States. I believe you will enjoy it.
Ingredients for Romesco Sauce
To make this simple romesco sauce, you’ll need the following ingredients. I’m sure you already have all of the components!
- Roasted red peppers: Use high-quality roasted red peppers from a jar. Divina and Whole Foods 365 are two of my favorite brands. I tried roasting my own peppers (here’s how), but the resulting sauce didn’t taste any different.
- If possible, choose unsalted whole almonds. It doesn’t matter if it’s raw or cooked. If you only have salted almonds, you can leave out the salt and season to taste at the end. Hazelnuts and pine nuts are two other typical possibilities.
- Traditional romesco sauces are made with roasted tomatoes, but sun-dried tomatoes provide a similar rich depth of flavor without the effort.
- Garlic, raw: Garlic has a pungency and stinks to it. The vinegar helps to soften the bite.
- Sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar: The acidic flavor of vinegar adds zing to this sauce.
- Smoked Paprika: This gives a smoky taste to the tomatoes that would normally be found by roasting them.
- Cayenne pepper: A quarter teaspoon gives a punch of flavor. This sauce isn’t particularly spicy, but if you’re sensitive to heat, you may leave it out.
- Extra-virgin olive oil: This sauce is made rich and creamy with extra-virgin olive oil. You’ll start by combining the other ingredients, then drizzle in the olive oil to finish.
You’ll notice that this sauce isn’t quite the same as the romesco sauce you’d find in Catalonia.
Traditional romesco is made with roasted tomatoes and bitxo peppers (similar to New Mexican chili peppers, according to Wikipedia) or nyora peppers (a small sun-dried variety of red bell pepper).
Using roasted red bell peppers and sun-dried tomatoes, I essentially swapped the roasted and sun-dried aspects. This pantry-friendly version tastes very similar with the addition of smoked paprika!
Uses of This Sauce
Fish and various meats, such as chicken or steak, are traditionally paired with Romesco. It’s fantastic with roasted or grilled vegetables (especially eggplant, cauliflower, and potatoes).
Flatbread or crusty bread is also great with Romesco. Serve as a dip for raw vegetables. Finally, it goes well with any type of egg cooked in any way (fried eggs, frittatas, scrambled eggs, you name it).
|Time to prepare: 5 minutes
5 minutes in total
Yield: 2 1/2 cup
This romesco sauce is out of this world! This quick and easy romesco dish is made with pantry staples and takes only 5 minutes to prepare. It’s brash, zesty, and delectable. About 2 12 cup yield from this recipe.
- One 16-ounce jar of roasted red peppers, drained
- ½ cup raw or roasted almonds (unsalted)
- ¼ cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, rinsed and drained
- 2 medium-to-large cloves of garlic, peeled and quartered
- 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt, to taste
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Combine everything except the olive oil in a blender (ideally) or food processor. Secure the lid and begin blending on low, gradually increasing the pace as you obtain traction.
- Start drizzling in the olive oil while the mixer is running once the ingredients are mostly mixed. Blend until you get the consistency you want (I like my romesco sauce pretty creamy, but you might prefer it with a more chunky texture).
- If it doesn’t exactly knock your socks off, add more salt (up to 14 tsp) to taste. Serve right away, or keep in the refrigerator for up to 10 days in a jar.
- MAKE IT NUT-FREE: It’s generally best if you leave the almonds out entirely. Pine nuts would work if you can tolerate them (technically pine nuts are seeds, but people with nut allergies are sometimes allergic to pine nuts as well).
- MAKE IT TOMATO-FREE: While most Romesco sauces contain tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes can be left out if desired.