A fast and easy, rustic and hearty, versatile sauce with Spanish influence; Romesco Sauce takes about 5 minutes from start to finish!
We all love a good sauce, right? This particular sauce is super easy to make and super delicious to eat too. I cooked a double batch of pasta and stirred the drained, hot pasta into this sauce for a very fast dinner after work one night. There was lots of pasta and sauce leftover, which in my opinion, tasted even better the next day.
Romesco sauce is one of those sauces that you don’t hear much about. It’s relatively new to me too. I kept seeing the recipe pop up in my food Pinterest feed, but never really had much interest in it until one day when I was searching for a way to use up my leftover Roasted Red Peppers.
You will note in the recipe card below, I listed a 10 ounce jar of roasted red peppers as the first ingredient. If you are so inclined, you can make your own roasted red peppers right in your own oven. Click on the link for my recipe and instructions above and you’ll have lots of roasted red peppers on hand for this Fast and Easy Romesco Sauce. Otherwise, you can purchase a jar from your local grocer.
Now, when I think sauce, I almost automatically think of pasta. After all, what is pasta without sauce? But, when it comes to romesco sauce, you don’t have to limit yourself to just pasta. Romesco sauce has a deep and wonderful flavour. No doubt, you are familiar with the taste of roasted red peppers – a little earthy, a little sweet, and a great smokiness. In romesco sauce, that flavour is elevated with a few pantry ingredients.
The vinegar adds a slight bitterness to the sauce, and the garlic and parsley help to enhance the aroma and freshness. In my opinion though, it’s the cayenne pepper and the paprika that bring this sauce home. The cayenne adds a little more smokiness and heat, while the paprika not only brightens the colour to that gorgeous deep red, but also adds to that Spanish flavour.
So now that you have this lovely romesco sauce, what are you going to do with it? Pasta is one very quick and easy way to go, but this recipe makes quite a bit of sauce, so you might have a lot left over. Don’t worry, Dear Reader, romesco sauce works in so many other ways.
If you’d like, you can try smearing this sauce onto your bread instead of mayonnaise or mustard when making your favourite sandwich. The smokiness will add such a great flavour to ham and roast beef sandwiches. It’s also really great on fish and chicken.
Try marinating your fish or chicken into some of the romesco sauce. Cover and refrigerate for at least one hour. When ready, grill the fish or chicken until just cooked. You’ll love the sweet roasted bell pepper taste, along with the smokiness and heat. If you don’t have a grill, just place the fish or chicken onto a parchment lined baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees until cooked through.
There is really only one steadfast rule that you should totally abide by when preparing this romesco sauce. Whatever you do, do not skip the toasting of the almonds. It’s super easy to do and adds so much more flavour to the sauce. In reality, whenever cooking or baking, you should always toast nuts a bit first before using them. Trust me on this!
To toast the almonds, place them into a dry skillet and over medium heat, stir them around just until you can smell the woodiness and they start to turn a golden brown colour. Once you see that colour change, remove them from the hot pan right away and onto a shallow plate. This will stop the toasting process and prevent the almonds from burning.
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Fast and Easy Romesco Sauce
- 10 ounces jarred roasted red peppers, drained (about one cup)
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1 cup whole roasted almonds, toasted
- 2 tablespoons vinegar
- 3 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup freshly chopped parsley
- Begin by toasting the almonds. Add the almonds to a dry skillet over medium heat. Stir until almonds are browned and you can smell the aroma. Remove from heat and transfer the almonds to a shallow plate to cool.
- Once almonds have cooled, add all ingredients to a food processor. Pulse until well blended and smooth.
- Transfer to a clean mason jar and keep refrigerated. Will keep fresh for up to one week.
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