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    Recipe for romesco sauce

    Makes 2 cups

    1dried ancho or other mild chili pepper, stemmed and seeded
    1cup boiling water
    1small red bell pepper
    4tablespoons olive oil
    ½cup whole blanched almonds
    4cloves garlic, sliced
    ½teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika
    1can (15 ounces) whole tomatoes, crushed in a bowl
    1tablespoon sherry vinegar
    Salt and black pepper, to taste

    1. In a bowl, combine the dried chili and water. Set aside for 15 minutes or until softened. Drain and chop.

    2. Meanwhile, with tongs or a large kitchen fork, hold the bell pepper over a gas flame, turning occasionally, for 8 minutes or until the skin blackens. Or broil the pepper, turning often, for 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer
    to a bowl and cover; cool. Peel off and discard the skin. Halve, stem, and seed the pepper. Cut into 1-inch
    pieces.

    3. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil. Add the almonds and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes, or until lightly golden. Reduce the heat and add the garlic. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the paprika and cook, stirring, for 1 minute more. Add the tomatoes, chili pepper, and bell pepper. Turn up the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until the mixture thickens. Remove from heat; cool.

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    4. In a food processor, work the tomato mixture, remaining 2 tablespoons of oil, vinegar, salt, and black pepper until the mixture is a coarse puree. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and black pepper, if you like. Reserve ¼ cup of the romesco sauce for the salad. Lisa Zwirn