Got 15 minutes? Add Chef Charles Webb’s versatile Romesco sauce recipe to your cooking repertoire.
Entrepreneur and Chicago-based chef Charles Webb has built an empire around providing a variety of food-related services, such as food and beverage consulting, gourmet catering, and meal curating, which employ his culinary prowess and expertise. We were lucky enough to tap into said expertise, and asked him to share an easy, staple recipe with us that’ll transform a meal. His answer: Romesco.
“Romesco is a sauce that I learned while living in Barcelona,” he told us. “It reminds me of the beautiful food days I experienced while living there—so many great memories with the flavors and scents that perfume the house.”
How can you use it? “This sauce works really well with poultry, fish, meats, and vegetables, including the traditional calcots (green onions indicative of Catalonia).” It’s fresh, bright, and full-bodied, and adds great depth of flavor to any dish, but perhaps most importantly, it can be ready in about 15 minutes, making it an easy part of a weeknight meal.
Romesco Sauce MAKES 2½ CUPS
25 blanched almond slivers
25 cleaned hazelnuts
1 garlic clove
½ baguette, a few days old
3 tomatoes, vine ripe
4 large roasted and cleaned red peppers
¼ cup olive oil (Arbequina is suggested)
½ cup sherry vinegar
Dash of red chili flake
Put almonds and hazelnuts in food processor and process until finely ground.
Pour a few tablespoons of virgin olive oil into a small frying pan and quickly fry the bread until both sides are browned. Remove from pan and let cool on a side plate.
Quarter the tomatoes and saute? in the same pan, adding oil if needed. Saute? until they start to break down and lightly brown. Add tomatoes to the side resting plate and season with a little salt and chili flakes.
Once bread is cooled, tear into pieces and process with almonds and hazelnuts. Add olive oil and continue to process.
Place roasted red peppers into the processor with the other ingredients and process until ingredients have thickened. Start with a little olive oil to loosen up.
While processor is running, slowly drizzle in the oil and sherry vinegar. Add salt to taste. Make sure it's the consistency you like and if not, add a little more sherry or extra virgin olive oil to loosen up the puree.