Romesco Sauce... with Grilled Spring Onions I've bookmarked this recipe for sometime now...just to make it when my spring onions were ready. My garden doesn't always see fruit from my labor... it's a challenge to have a garden in Montana. But every year I get excited to plant. Over the years, I've eliminated quite a few things that don't grow. I'll stick with the basics...potatoes, tomatoes, strawberries, raspberries, fresh herbs and plenty of chives and onions. Onions do very well, so I was excited to see them out early this year...even under a blanket of snow... they emerged. So the recipe I am posting is a result of my first fruits of my garden...spring onion.
When I initially saw the recipe on the Saveur website, I knew I would attempt to make it. I love grilled vegetables... and could probably eat them every day. The grilled vegetables become ever so sweet...the onions loose their pungency and they're a treat to eat. We normally use regular onions on the grill...either yellow, sweet vidalia, and sometimes red onions. But as of recent, we have been enjoying grilled spring onions(scallions) as well. They require a bit more care when grilling...you have to make sure the green leaves don't burn. But they are worth it in the end. The recipe makes a lot of sauce...so unless you are serving a crowd, be prepared to store some away and use it throughout the week. I love using the sauce as a dip(with pita chips, or fresh vegetables), as a base for a sandwich, or even as a sauce for a variety of dishes. The original recipe uses about 2 pounds of scallions...I chose to make a bunch and use the rest as a dip.
While the original romesco sauce recipe used a soaked dried ancho chile pepper, I found it much easier to substitute some ancho chile powder instead. The original recipe also uses jarred roasted bell peppers...but I prefer making my own. The taste difference is so huge that I find making my own homemade roasted peppers well worth the trouble. And if I am grilling the onions, I might as well grill the peppers.
This romesco sauce is packed full of flavor! And while it went rather well with the grilled onions, I felt it was even better used as a dip...with flatbread or fresh/grilled vegetables. A great appetizer that can stand alone or used alongside other dips or spreads. Because the sauce is so versatile and so good(I could eat it by the spoonful), I think it deserves to get posted:). Hope you enjoy....
Note: Since I roasted my own bell peppers, I found the need to add a bit more acidity in the form of lemon juice....if you are using jarred roasted peppers, you might not need to. Just taste and adjust to preference.
Tip: In case you would like to make the sauce gluten-free, you can omit the sliced bread and add a bit more almonds. Serve the sauce with a variety of fresh/grilled vegetables... or rice crackers.
It's also a great tapas-style appetizer...serve it with a side of tiny steamed/boiled potatoes. Or, you can: scoop out the inside potato pulp, spoon a bit of the romesco sauce, add a cilantro/parsley leaf, and you'll have individual bite size appetizers. It'll still be gluten-free and delicious!
You will need:
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1⁄2 cup whole almonds
1 slice white bread, cubed( I used whole wheat)
3 cloves garlic, smashed
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
4 tsp. smoked paprika
1 tsp ground ancho chile powder
2-3 large bell peppers( or 1 1⁄2 cups roughly chopped jarred roasted peppers)
2 TBS apple vinegar
juice of half a lemon, or to taste
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1. Grill bell peppers on high,until charred all over. Remove peppers and cover:set aside.
2. Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add almonds and cubed bread; cook until golden, 3–4 minutes.
3. Transfer almond mixture to a processor bowl with a slotted spoon. Return skillet to medium heat. Add onions and garlic. Cook until golden, 3–4 minutes.
4. Add paprika and ancho chile powder. Cook for an additional minute. Put the onion/chile mixture along with the oil in the food processor bowl.
5. Peel peppers and cut into strips. Place the peppers in the food processor bowl as well. Add vinegar and salt. Pureee untill smooth. Add juice of lemon and more salt if needed. Adjust lemon juice and salt to taste. Set aside.
6. Drizzle a bit of oil on the scallions...and a bit of salt. Grill on med heat until charred and soft. Turn often. Serve with romesco sauce.