Thursday, June 28, 2012

Gluten-Free Romesco Sauce

I have been wanting to try making this classic Spanish sauce for a while, but while it is typically made using bread to help thicken it up, I wanted to find a healthier option.  I was inspired when I spied a sweet potato sitting on our counter.  I had a hunch that this sweet, creamy vegetable would be a perfect substitute and I was right.

This sauce is sweet, smokey and tangy and can be used in a variety of ways.  Use it as a sandwich spread, or on pasta, as a dip for raw vegetables, or as a sauce for fish or chicken.  I stirred some into a skillet of roasted zucchini, chickpeas and Spanish olives, and served it all over rice.  Fabulous!

Gluten-Free Romesco Sauce

1 large sweet potato, cut into 8-10 pieces
3 red bell peppers, quartered
2 tomatoes, halved
1 large onion, quartered
3-4 cloves garlic, peeled
1/4 cup almonds
2 tbls sherry vinegar (or red wine vinegar)
1 tbls ancho chili powder (or regular chili powder)
1/2 tsp hot smoked paprika (or sweet smoked paprika + cayenne pepper, to taste)
1/2 tsp salt, or to taste

Place veggies (keeping peels on everything except garlic) on a foil-lined baking sheet and roast at 400F for about 40 minutes.  Remove pan from oven and cover veggies (I did this with another baking sheet, but you can use more foil).  Meanwhile, almonds in a dry pan for about 5 minutes, making sure you do not let them burn. Uncover the vegetables after 15 minutes and remove peel from sweet potato, peppers, onion, and tomatoes. 

Place the almonds, roasted veggies, and remaining ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth.  Makes 6 cups of sauce.  Refrigerate for 4-5 days or freeze.

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