Romesco Sauce
Cuisine: Catalan
Author: Clifford A. Wright
Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 2 hours
Total time: 2 hours 20 mins
  • 1 large slice Italian or French country bread, crust removed (about 2 ounces)
  • ¾ cup whole blanched almonds, toasted in an oven until light golden
  • 4 medium onions, finely chopped
  • ¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil plus more if necessary
  • 2 heads garlic, cloves separated
  • 9 large plum tomatoes (about 1¾ pounds), cut in half, seeds squeezed out, and grated against the largest holes of a grater
  • 2 roasted guindilla (finger) peppers, peeled, cored, and seeded
  • 4 large roasted red bell peppers, peeled, cored, and seeded
  • ¾ cup red and white wine vinegar (mixed)
  1. In a small skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat, then cook the bread until golden on both sides. Remove and place in the food processor with the almonds. Process until fine. Remove and set aside.
  2. Put the cut-up onions in the food processor. Pull 6 cloves off one of the heads of garlic, peel, and chop and place in the processor with the onions. Process both until very fine.
  3. In a earthenware casserole (preferably), heat about 6 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat, then cook, stirring occasionally, the sofrito of onions, remaining whole garlic cloves, and tomatoes until quite dense, about 1½ hours. (If using earthenware and it is not flameproof, or if you don't know, you will need to use a heat diffuser. Earthenware heats up slower but retains its heat, longer than non-earthenware casseroles. When using earthenware, food may cook slower at first and then cook very quickly while retaining its heat, so adjust accordingly). This is the romesco.
  4. Place the bell peppers and chiles in a saucepan or skillet with the wine vinegar and reduce the vinegar by three-quarters over high heat. Pour the peppers, along with the almonds and bread, into the casserole with the onion and tomatoes and cook until thick, about another 30 minutes.
  5. Transfer the romesco to the food processor again, in batches if necessary, and process as you drizzle in 4 to 6 tablespoons of the remaining olive oil, making sure that you do not process for more than 20 seconds.
Recipe by Cook-Coquus at