Hazelnut Romesco Sauce

For this accompaniment to his spiced short ribs, Michael Schwartz prepares his own version of the classic Catalan red pepper sauce. He thickens it with sourdough bread, which adds a pleasant tang.

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  • Total Time:
  • Servings: makes about 1 1/2 cups

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  • 1 small red bell pepper
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup cubed sourdough bread ( 1/2 inch)
  • 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 cup skinned roasted hazelnuts, chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

How to make this recipe

  1. Roast the red bell pepper directly over a gas flame or under a preheated broiler, turning, until charred all over; let cool. Discard the charred skin, stem and seeds. Coarsely chop the bell pepper.

  2. In a medium skillet, melt the butter in 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the bread cubes and cook over moderate heat, tossing, until crisp, about 3 minutes. Let cool.

  3. In a food processor, combine the roasted pepper, toasted bread cubes, sherry vinegar, tomato paste, garlic and hazelnuts and puree. With the machine on, slowly pour in the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil. Season the <em>romesco</em> sauce with salt and pepper.

Make Ahead

The romesco sauce can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. Let return to room temperature before serving.

Contributed By Published December 2008

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