A Romesco sauce is a traditional Spanish (Catalan) roasted pepper and nut sauce. Here I give it a modern twist and a few shortcuts. Ayala's Magic Spice replaces the long list of spices and adds color and a nutrition and flavor boost.
Feel free to use jarred roasted bell peppers -- they're tasty and perfect for this. The tomato paste is a nutrient-dense easy replacement for charred tomatoes, and since tasty tomatoes aren't always around, you can count on it. I tried this sauce once with only hazelnuts instead of the almonds, pine-nut and hazelnut mix I usually used, just because I ran out of the rest that day, and never looked back.
It is such a versatile sauce! I love it on toasted bread, on rice, couscous or pasta and on roasted veggies.
- ½ cup roasted hazelnuts, skins rubbed off (as much as possible)
- 1 slice toasted whole wheat bread, broken into pieces
- 4 garlic cloves
- ½ cup coarsely chopped parsley
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 roasted bell peppers, peeled and seeded (jarred is FINE)
- ¼ cup red wine vinegar
- ½ cup olive oil
- A pinch of pepper flakes
- 2 teaspoon Ayala's Magic Spice
- Salt to taste
Place all the ingredients in the food processor, and pulse until it's texturally right for you: I like it a little chunky, but you may opt for smooth.
Taste and correct seasoning by adding more hot pepper flakes or salt.
Enjoy, Dr. Ayala