Grilled Asparagus with Romesco Sauce
This piquant sauce from Spain plays point and counterpoint with the palate. The contrast of the bright green of the spears with the red of the sauce makes an eye-catching combo.
11⁄2 lb. fresh asparagus, trimmed, blanched if large or jumbo
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
3⁄4 cup roughly chopped roasted red bell pepper
2 tbsp. roughly chopped oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained
2 (1-in.) slices lightly toasted baguette, torn
2 tbsp. toasted blanched slivered almonds
1 clove garlic, chopped
1⁄2 tbsp. white wine vinegar
1⁄2 tbsp. chopped parsley
Crushed red pepper, to taste
Water, as needed
1. Brush asparagus with olive oil. Grill over medium-high heat, turning frequently, until lightly browned and fork tender, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper; cool.
2. For romesco sauce: In food processor, puree red pepper with 1⁄8 teaspoon salt and next seven ingredients. With machine running, drizzle in 11⁄2 tablespoons olive oil. If necessary, thin with water, 1 tablespoon at a time.
3. Arrange asparagus on a platter; serve with sauce.