Now that grilling season is upon us (or most of us anyway), I’d like to introduce you to your new best culinary friend, Romesco. Hailing from the Catalan region of Northeastern Spain, this smoky nut and red pepper sauce plays so well with just about anything you can throw on a grill, that you might just want to carve out a special spot in your fridge to keep a jar of this on-hand for the entire Summer season. Whether you’re firing up a steak, some pork chops, a spatchcocked bird, or a swordfish steak, a dollop of romesco alongside will transport you to the warm breeze and radiant sunset of a perfect Spanish evening. Almost any nut and hard, salty cheese will work in this recipe so don’t feel you need to jet to the store for pistachios and parmesan if you have other options in-hand.
Taking care to toast the nuts before using them will elevate their flavor, but if you’re in a hurry you can skip this step and still end up with a delicious result. Romesco freezes beautifully, so make a double batch and toss a bunch into a freezer ziplock so that in the time it takes you to shout ándale, you can dress up any meal in Spanish style. Also, no need to get too crazy with ingredient amounts here, most of this stuff you can eyeball, and as always, adjust to suit your own individual taste. If you want to kick the heat of the sauce up a bit add a pinch of red pepper flakes. Have an army of mint threatening to take over your garden this Summer, and looking for places to show-off its cool, fresh vibe, toss a handful in here and let it shine.
Cheers – S
- 3 ounces parmesan cheese, grated
- 1/2 cup blanched almonds, toasted
- 1/2 cup shelled pistachios, toasted
- 5-6 ounces roasted red peppers
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar, plus more to taste
- 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
- handful parsley leaves
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more to taste
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- Place all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor or hopper of a blender and blitz until smooth, adding a little extra oil if needed to give it the consistency of a loose paste. Season to taste with extra salt, vinegar, or smoked paprika.