OIL-FREE ROMESCO SAUCE

Oil Free Romesco Sauce In A Bowl Garnished With Parsley

OIL-FREE ROMESCO SAUCE

by | May 15, 2020

Eating mostly plants was not something that I ever envisioned myself doing, however it did come to pass over a number of years. The one thing that made it so much more fun and absolutely delicious was SAUCES, especially this Oil-Free Romesco Sauce. I try to prepare a variety of sauces for the week on a batch cooking day. Then, the sauce is ready to go, and there is one less step to a quick and easy weekday lunch or dinner. The smoky flavor of romesco has won me over.

Oil Free Romesco Sauce In A Bowl Garnished With Parsley
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Oil-Free Romesco Sauce

Romesco Sauce originated with fishermen in Spain where it was eaten with fish. This oil-free variation is a delicious adaptation of the original and can also be served as an accompaniment to roasted and fresh vegetables of all kinds, as a sauce for pasta, as a spread for a sandwich or a topping for tacos.
Course: Sauce
Cuisine: Spanish
Keyword: Dairy free, Gluten free, No oil, Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings: 8 about 2 cups
Calories: 134kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 large red bell peppers
  • 1 cup almonds whole, raw
  • 1 ¼ cups tomato puree
  • 1 Tablespoon sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 pinch cayenne
  • ¼ cup roughly chopped parsley
  • ½ cup water
  • salt to taste

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 450 degrees(F) and line one sheet pan with aluminum foil.
  • Place the whole red bell peppers on the sheet pan, and roast on the top rack of the oven until the skin is charred on one side. With tongs, turn the peppers one quarter turn to allow the next side to char and continue to turn two more times until all sides of the peppers are blistered. Remove from the oven, place the peppers in a small bowl and cover the bowl with a lid or place them directly in a paper bag. Set aside for 30 minutes.
  • Allow the oven to cool to a temperature of 350 degrees(F). Place the raw almonds on another sheet pan and roast for about 10 minutes(or until they are fragrant) being careful not to let them burn. Remove the almonds from the oven and set them aside to cool.
  • Once the peppers have cooled, remove the seeds and the stems. peel off the skin, and place them in the food processor/blender together with the cooled almonds, tomato puree, red wine vinegar, garlic, smoked paprika, cayenne, parsley, water and salt, if using.
  • Puree the mixture until it reaches your desired consistency, scraping down the sides with a spatula from time to time. If you prefer a thinner sauce, you can add more water, a little at a time. Processing may take a few minutes depending on your blender/food processor.

Notes

It is easier to remove the skins from the peppers under running water, however, I do not recommend this because you will lose some of the flavor.  

Nutrition

Calories: 134kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 14mg | Potassium: 398mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 1616IU | Vitamin C: 57mg | Calcium: 57mg | Iron: 2mg

To make Oil-Free Romesco Sauce, you’ll need…..

  • 2 large red bell peppers
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • ¼ cup chopped parsley
  • 1 cup raw whole almonds
  • 1 ¼ cup tomato puree
  • 1 Tablespoon sherry or red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 pinch cayenne
  • ½ cup water
  • salt if desired

Fo this Oil-Free Romesco Sauce, I used red peppers that I roasted myself, however to make it a five minute sauce, use roasted red peppers in a jar. I prefer to roast them myself because the jarred variety are usually packed in oil. I like to leave the oil out whenever I can. After roasting your own, you can decide whether you prefer the taste to the jarred variety. Cooks Illustrated and Fine Cooking.com rated Dunbars the best, and it’s important to note that the brine in Dunbars is simply salt and water. There’s no added oil.

If you’re using the jarred variety,

this sauce will come together in minutes. That’s why it’s important to always have pantry staples on hand. You can then whip up a dip for unexpected guests or just when you’re really hungry for a snack. Add all of the ingredients to a food processor or blender and puree the mixture until it reaches your desired consistency. I prefer a thicker consistency, but if you like a thinner sauce, add more water until you reach the consistency that you like. Depending on your blender/food processor, this may take a few minutes and may require stopping the device to stir and/or scrape down the sides with a spatula.

My favorite way to enjoy this Oil-Free Romesco Sauce is with roasted vegetables, but it’s great with fresh veggies, as a sauce for pasta, a spread for a sandwich or a topping for tacos.

Things You Might Like To Know About This Recipe….

Sherry Wine Vinegar

I prefer the complexity of sherry wine vinegar to red wine vinegar in romesco sauce, and because “real” sherry vinegar is imported from Spain, it is perfect for this dish. There are however, domestic sherry vinegars that are very good. Cook’s Illustrated rated Napa Valley Naturals Reserve Sherry Vinegar as #1 in their 2016 taste test. I have also used and enjoyed the O variety as well as Columela Sherry Vinegar Solera 30. Sherry vinegar is available in most grocery stores these days. Don’t let an opportunity to taste your ingredients pass you by. That’s how you’ll discover your favorite sherry vinegar. It’s your palate that counts! Of course, if you don’t have sherry vinegar on hand, you can easily substitute red wine vinegar.

Tomato Puree

Tomato puree is a thick sauce of cooked tomatoes that have been pureed and strained of seeds and skin. You can buy it canned and boxed in the grocery store or you can make it yourself. You can find out how to make tomato puree from scratch here. Sometimes salt has been added to the canned varieties so you may want to check the ingredients if you are limiting salt.

Smoked Paprika

Peppers that are smoked before they are crushed yield smoked paprika. As its name implies, smoked paprika has a strong smoky taste which I love. If however you prefer a less smoky flavor, check out this article at RecipeMarker.com for substitutions.

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