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Spain: Roasted Leeks with Romesco Sauce

Spain: Roasted Leeks with Romesco Sauce

Since alluring travel plans remain far off in the distance, experience new international flavors at home with these nutrient-packed regional dishes.

Servings: 4

  • 3 red bell peppers
  • 1 cup hazelnuts, peeled (if unable to find peeled, follow the instructions in step 4)
  • 2 tablespoons baking soda (if following step 4)
  • 4 cloves garlic, skin on
  • 2 large or 4 small leeks
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • One 15-ounce can fire roasted tomatoes


  1. Place rack at the top of the oven and broil on high. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. 
  2. On the baking sheet, place bell peppers and garlic cloves and broil for 20 minutes, using tongs to rotate every 3 minutes. Skin on peppers should be completely black and blistered. 
  3. In a mixing bowl, add peppers and cover with plastic wrap. Set aside for 10 minutes to steam. Remove the stems and seeds. Peel off skin. Set aside.
  4. In a large saucepan, boil 1 cup water. Add hazelnuts and baking soda. Boil for 3 minutes. Transfer hazelnuts to a colander and rinse with cold water. Peel hazelnuts.
  5. Heat oven to 375 F. Line 2 baking sheets with aluminum foil.
  6. Add garlic cloves and peeled hazelnuts to one baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes. 
  7. Remove the tough outer leaves from the leeks but keep the top 4-6 inches of tough greens and the bottom roots. Rise off any dirt off. 
  8. Add leeks to the second baking sheet. Rub 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 teaspoon salt onto leeks. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until leeks are charred on the outside and tender on the inside. 
  9. Peel garlic cloves. Set aside.
  10. In a food processor, blend bell peppers, garlic, hazelnuts, sherry vinegar, canned tomatoes, 1/4 cup olive oil and 1/2 teaspoon salt until smooth to make romesco. 
  11. Add leeks to a serving dish. Using a spoon, dollop romesco on top. Serve immediately

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