One of my favourite sauces to serve with fish is the catalan sauce «romesco». I fell in love with in during a trip to Barcelona and everytime it lands on my plate, I’m desperately searching for a spoon, to devour it to the last drop. So I decided to turn it into a soup. Roasted tomatoes and sweet red peppers, blanched almonds amd the intense flavour of smoked paprica. What’s not to like about that. This soup gets all it’s delicious creaminess from the ground almonds, without the addition of cream. Serve it with prawns and your guests will be asking for the recipe.
- 2 red bell peppers, halved, seeds removed
- ½ kg ripe tomatoes (about 5 medium), halved
- 2 medium onions, thickly sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, peeled and left whole
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- ½ cup blanched, roasted almonds (see note)
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- ½ Tbs balsamic vinegar
- 12 large prawns, peeled and cooked
Preheat oven to 175 C. In an oven tray, put tomatoes, peppers, onions and garlic. Drizzle with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake for 40 minutes.
Transfer baked vegetables in a blender. Add the almonds, paprika and vinegar and blend on high speed until everything is very smooth. Pour mixture in a pot over low heat. Add some water if its too thick. Taste soup and adjust salt and pepper. Serve with the prawns and crusty bread.
Note: To roast almonds, bake in a 175 C oven for about 6-7 minutes until fragrant. If you don’t have blanched almonds, you can use unpeeled. In fact, the almonds taste better unblanched!