Romesco Dip


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.

Romesco Dip


April 21, 2009


1/4 cup sliced or slivered almonds, or half almonds and half pine nuts

1 garlic clove, peeled

2 thick slices French bread, toasted (or 3 if you're using a baguette)

2 red peppers, roasted

1-2 Tbsp. red wine, sherry or balsamic vinegar

1 tsp. paprika

salt to taste

2-6 Tbsp. olive or canola oil


1Toast almonds and garlic in a small saucepan over medium heat for about 3 minutes, until the almonds are pale golden and fragrant. Transfer to a food processor. Tear the bread into chunks into the food processor. Pulse until the bread and nuts turn to crumbs.

2Add the red peppers, vinegar, paprika and salt and whiz until well blended. With the motor running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil and process until the mixture has the consistency of thick mayonnaise, scraping down the sides of the bowl.

3Serve with pitas, slices of crusty baguette, cooked tail-on shrimp, naan or veggies.

4Makes about 1 cup.


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40 comments on “Romesco Dip

  1. thepinkpeppercorn
    April 21, 2009 at 8:32 pm

    I LOVE romesco!!!!!!

  2. Cheryl
    April 21, 2009 at 8:44 pm

    I love making it a bit thinner, almost sauce-like and serving with fish.

  3. JulieVR
    April 21, 2009 at 8:49 pm

    Yes! Or roast chicken. Yum.

  4. Erica B.
    April 21, 2009 at 9:15 pm

    I think your Romesco dip was the second recipe I made when I first got Grazing last year…the first were the Whole Wheat Raspberry Scones – the skinnier and more fabulous fresh from the oven version of those oh-so-delish ones from Starbucks.

  5. sara
    April 21, 2009 at 11:47 pm

    This looks FANTASTIC! I have to make it…I love things like this that are easy to make but add a ton of flavor.

  6. michelle
    April 22, 2009 at 12:48 am

    I’ve never had Romesco- it looks really yummy! I’m looking for a dip to serve with Naan- I might try this!

  7. Kevin
    April 22, 2009 at 2:36 am

    I have been wanting to try a romesco sauce. It looks so good. What an amazing colour!

  8. Carolyn
    April 22, 2009 at 2:58 am

    I can’t wait to make this!
    I baked the maple walnut cookies last night (letting the dough sit for approx 30 hours). I added some candied (in maple syrup) bacon. They are great!

  9. Kate
    April 22, 2009 at 3:11 am

    Your timing is a God send. My husband went to the grocer yesterday to pick up red peppers that were on sale. I thought some to dip into hummus, some to caramelize in pepperonata, and a few to stash in the freezer. I thought 4 -5 lbs. would be fine. He came home with over 13 lbs.! Guess what I’ll be trying? Thanks, Julie 🙂

  10. Monique
    April 22, 2009 at 3:46 am

    Sounds great..thanks again.

  11. Carrie
    April 22, 2009 at 6:58 am

    I’ve never had romesco, but this looks fabulous! I’m definitely going to try it soon!

  12. Andrea
    April 22, 2009 at 9:35 am

    YUM (to the dip and the reference to Leo!).

  13. mrsjaxies
    April 22, 2009 at 9:45 am

    OH MY GOODNESS. i had some extra roasted peppers that needed to be used up, and i made this–it is FABULOUS. i’m eating it right now as a spread on a sandwich with chicken and feta. it’s ridiculous how tasty it is.

  14. robyn
    April 22, 2009 at 10:04 am

    I looove the colour of this! I made a roasted red pepper and feta dip that is out of this world, but the colour isn’t nearly as pretty! I’ll have to try this. I guess you could use orange peppers too for a stunning colour!

  15. Hillary
    April 22, 2009 at 12:42 pm

    I didn’t know that’s how romesco dip was made. Great recipe!

  16. Elizabeth L.
    April 22, 2009 at 2:58 pm

    I first tried making Romesco sauce from a great book called “Cooking for Mr. Latte” by Amanda Hesser, a New York food writer. Hers was far more complicated, but the end result looked just the same. She said in the book that after her first bite (on a beach in Spain)”her life improved measurably”. I agree.

  17. Sue
    April 22, 2009 at 3:16 pm

    Hi Julie,
    Your butter chicken recipe looked so good that I bought the ingredients last night and prepped it for the crock pot to be cooked all day today while I was at work. Looks and smells great,can’t wait to try it, but I am curious about the curry paste. I bought some green curry paste to try (something different for me!), but had to decide between green and red curry paste. What is the difference?

  18. deeba
    April 22, 2009 at 8:39 pm

    I wanted to make this the minute I saw it on Tastespotting…& guess what…I DID!! I had day old focaccia waiting to be used, & charred red bell peppers too. It’s fantastic, & I can eat it by the spoonful! Thank you

  19. Monique
    April 26, 2009 at 5:55 am

    We had it yesterday..it disappeared in a heartbeat!

  20. Becky and the Beanstock
    April 28, 2009 at 8:40 am

    I actually made this very recipe for a dinner party two Saturdays ago — and people were begging to take the leftovers home. It’s more labor intensive than the ingredient list suggests, but it’s so worth it — and I always make up a bunch of it (still ended up with very little after everyone else absconded with it. Ah well).

  21. deeba
    May 10, 2009 at 7:17 pm

    Made the dip, loved it to the last bit left in the bowl. Thank you for posting it…http://www.passionateaboutbaking.com/2009/05/chipotle-garlic-focaccia-romesco-dip.html

  22. Celine Alberti
    May 4, 2011 at 12:14 am

    Beautiful blog you’ve made here.. Truly, it’s quite a feat! Keep up the good work ^_^

  23. Loren
    May 28, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    yes thank 🙂 to post can I lern

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  25. Quiche
    February 11, 2012 at 6:36 pm

    I made this tonight, and it was amazing! I don’t think I’ll be putting mayo on my sandwiches anymore. 🙂 Thanks!

  26. nasreen
    September 14, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    nice recipes ,tnx for sharing with us.

  27. ayudiahrespatih
    July 26, 2015 at 5:40 pm

    I never try something like this. It sounds good… 🙂

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    September 1, 2015 at 3:02 am

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  31. Hyacinth
    October 23, 2017 at 7:22 pm

    I love this stuff. Your recipe is excellent! Thank you for sharing it.

    • Julie
      October 24, 2017 at 7:52 pm

      Glad you enjoyed it!

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