Made the Barrafina recipe romesco over the weekend. I played with the recipe by adding hotter cillis and by using fresh roasted Romano peppers instead of choricero peppers. Came out absolutely brilliantly.
Makes enough for 6-8 generous portions (about 650g)
- 1 dried red chilli, soaked in warm water for 2 hours (any chilli will do but naturally the better the chilli you use the better the result. I used Guajillo (relatively mild but with a strong finish, Chipotle meco (a smoked jalapeno) and a habanero for the intense strength.)
- 4 dried choricero peppers, soaked in warm water for 2 hours (this is the pepper used to make paprika, you’ll get it in Brindisa or one of the speciality food stores. I could not find any in Chiswick so I used 4 fresh romano peppers that I roasted in the oven)
- 4 large ripe plum tomatoes
- 100ml olive oil, plus 3 tablespoons
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 whole head of garlic, halved horizontally
- 100 gr blanched almonds
- 20 gr roasted almonds
- 1 slice of good-quality white bread, about 2cm thick (actually used Japanese panco, works just as well)
- 50ml sherry vinegar
Heat the oven to 180°C. Drain the soaked chilli and choricero peppers, then remove the seeds and set aside. Put the tomatoes into a roasting dish. Drizzle them with a tablespoon of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Wrap the two halves of garlic in foil and add to the roasting dish. Roast in the preheated oven for 20 minutes. When cool enough, pop the garlic cloves out of their skins and set aside. Meanwhile, in a separate smaller roasting dish, toast the almonds in the same oven for 2 to 3 minutes until lightly browned. Be careful – they burn fast! Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a small frying pan and fry the bread on both sides until golden brown. Put the chillies, choriceros, roasted tomatoes, garlic, blanched almonds, bread and vinegar into a blender or food processor. Add 100ml of olive oil and blitz until smooth. Season with plenty of salt and pepper and keep in the fridge until needed.
When serving sprinkle some of the roasted almonds over the meat.