Spoke at a retired teacher’s convention today, and demoed, among other things, a high-reward-for-minimal-effort romesco dip. Twice. Plus made a few batches to sample out. As always, I ended up with too much. As food goes, it’s a good thing to have too much of.
Romesco is made from roasted red peppers, toasted almonds, garlic, olive oil and toasted bread. (Yes, toast – you tear it up and blend it in, and it adds body and bulk to the dip without adding much in the way of fat and calories. I mean yes bread has calories, but it’s better than adding a cup of sour cream or mayo.)
It’s fantastic, intensely flavoured stuff, and makes a great substitute for mayo on sandwiches (especially roast chicken, salami or roasted/grilled veg sandwiches) or dip for shrimp with their tails. Perhaps its best feature is its ability to improve with age – a little like Leonardo DiCaprio – so you can do up a batch to dip into for a week or so, or make well in advance of a party. On one of my favourite nights a bunch of us sat outside in lawn chairs until almost dawn, relighting candles as they burned down, sipping bubbly moscato and beer and scooping up great garlicky gobs of romesco with pitas, which we had grilled until char-marked and crisp, then broken into pieces. We all had garlic burps for two days.
Tonight we ate it far more unceremoniously in front of the news with leftover baguette, which having been sliced early this afternoon had gotten a little leathery, so I brushed the pieces with oil and toasted them in the oven to revive them a little and make them easier on the teeth. Also: asparagus spears straight from the fridge and thawed tail-on shrimp from the freezer.
W asked for a raisin bran muffin and Cheerios. He got them.