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Thursday, Dec. 1, 2011 03:32 pm

Hazelnut romesco sauce

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Romesco sauce is a Spanish classic, used as a dip for raw or grilled vegetables, shrimp or as a condiment for roasted meats. The traditional version calls for dried chiles and almonds and requires more laborious preparation. This different version is lighter, easier to prepare and equally delicious.

  • 1/3 c. roasted hazelnuts, skinned
  • 2 large roasted red bell peppers, peels and seeds removed, either freshly prepared or bottled, about 1 1/2 c.
  • 3-4 coarsely chopped garlic cloves
  • 2 T. sherry vinegar
  • 1 T. chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 T. chopped fresh marjoram or savory
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • Cayenne, hot pepper flakes, or other dried hot pepper to taste, optional
  • 1/2 c. extra virgin olive oil
Place all the ingredients except the olive oil in the container of a blender or food processor. Process until everything is finely ground, scraping down the container as needed. With the motor running, add the olive oil in a thin stream. The sauce should be quite thick. Check the seasoning. You may want to add more salt, sugar, vinegar or hot pepper. The sauce can be used cold, room temperature, or gently warmed. (If it’s too hot, the oil will separate.) Makes about 1 3/4 c.
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