Turkey Meatballs with Romesco Sauce

Many years ago, my husband and I first tried Romesco sauce while on vacation in Barcelona. It was served with grilled ramps. We were instant fans! Using jarred fire-roasted red peppers as a shortcut is an absolute genius way to create it. I served the meatballs and sauce in this dish with slices of sourdough baguette to sop up every last drop. 🙂

This recipe was adapted from Bon Appétit, contributed by Sara Frost. I modified the proportions. The original recipe notes that the delicious sauce can add richness to other lean proteins such as fish, pan-roasted chicken breast and can also be used as a dip for vegetables. Next time, I may serve this dish with grilled scallions. Yum.

My son ate the leftover meatballs and baguette as a luxurious sandwich with melted cheese, topped with Romesco sauce, of course. This dish could also be served as a fabulous appetizer.

Yield: Serves 4 to 6

  • 1 3/4 lbs ground turkey
  • 2 large eggs, beaten to blend
  • 1/2 cup panko
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 4 to 6 T finely chopped parsley, plus more coarsely chopped for serving
  • 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • 2 T plus 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup toasted almonds (I used toasted sliced almonds)
  • 1 12 to 16-oz jar fire-roasted peppers in water, drained (I used Trader Joe’s)
  • 2 to 4 small garlic cloves, crushed (I used a garlic press)
  • 1 T red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • finely grated zest of half of a lemon
  • crusty bread, for serving, optional (I served it with a sourdough baguette)
  1. Preheat oven to 425°. (I set my oven to convection roast.)
  2. Using your hands, mix ground turkey, eggs, panko, cumin, onion powder, paprika, parsley, and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt in a large bowl.
  3. Working one at a time, use a 1 1/2-inch scoop out to ration out the mixture. (I had 28 meatballs.) Place on a plate.
  4. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium. (I used a large stainless steel “all-in-one” pan.)
  5. Working in 2 batches, cook meatballs until golden brown all over, about 2 minutes per side.
  6. Transfer skillet with all of the meatballs to oven and bake until cooked through, 5 to 7 minutes.
  7. While the meatballs are baking, pulse almonds in a food processor until coarsely ground. Transfer to a medium bowl.
  8. Pulse drained fire-roasted peppers, garlic, vinegar, and cayenne in food processor until almost smooth.
  9. Transfer to bowl with almonds and stir in remaining 1/2 cup oil; season Romesco sauce with salt, to taste.
  10. Spoon romesco sauce onto a platter or into shallow bowls; arrange meatballs on top.
  11. Finely grate lemon zest over and scatter coarsely chopped parsley on top. Serve with crusty bread, as desired.

Roast Pork Tenderloin with Carrot-Pine Nut Romesco Sauce

IMG_8389

This dish was unbelievably flavorful, colorful, delicious, healthy, and quick to prepare! I am such a fan of Spanish romesco sauce which is usually prepared with red bell peppers; this carrot-pine nut version was wonderful. This recipe was adapted from Bon Appetit. I increased the amount of pork, greens, and red wine vinegar. I also used red pepper flakes instead of Aleppo pepper and baby arugula in lieu of watercress or baby mustard greens. We ate it with roasted gold potatoes on the side. Fabulous!!

  • ¼ cup raw pine nuts
  • 1½ pound small carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise if larger
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 medium pork tenderloins
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • 1 tsp Aleppo pepper or ½ tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2-3 tablespoons red wine vinegar, divided, plus more to taste
  • 7 ounces spicy greens, such as baby arugula, watercress, or baby mustard
  1. Preheat oven to 350° (on convection roast).
  2. Toast pine nuts on a rimmed baking sheet, tossing occasionally, until golden brown, about 4 minutes; let cool.
  3. Increase temperature to 450° (on convection roast). Toss carrots with 1 Tbsp. oil on another rimmed baking sheet; season with salt and black pepper. Roast, tossing occasionally, until softened and browned, 15–20 minutes; let cool slightly.
  4. Meanwhile, heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Season tenderloins with salt and black pepper and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown, 10–15 minutes. Transfer skillet to oven and roast pork until a thermometer inserted into thickest portion registers 145°, 8–10 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes before slicing.
  5. Mince garlic in a food processor. Add toasted pine nuts and remaining 3 Tbsp. oil and pulse to a coarse paste. Add Aleppo pepper, one-fourth of carrots, 2 Tbsp. vinegar, and 1 Tbsp. water. Process, adding more water as needed, to a coarse purée; season romesco with salt, black pepper, and more vinegar, if desired.
  6. Toss greens with remaining carrots and remaining 1 Tbsp. vinegar in a large bowl; season with salt and black pepper. Drizzle pork with pan juices. Serve pork with romesco and salad.

One Year Ago:

If you like this you may also like:

Broccoli Salad with Hazelnut Romesco Sauce

IMG_5633

My husband and I fell in love with romesco sauce in Barcelona. We ate it several times with grilled ramps. I have been meaning to make it for years but it has just never happened! My husband spotted this recipe in the New York Times and I was excited to finally make it. It was very timely as well because we had just received long red peppers and Roma tomatoes in our CSA share AND we had just brought home fabulous Long Island broccoli from the farm stand.

The sauce is DELICIOUS!! The recipe makes enough sauce for this dish with plenty of leftovers. According to the recipe, it can keep in the fridge for at least a week. We are excited to eat the extra sauce over potatoes, green beans, or grilled tuna. It could also be served with shrimp or lobster. This recipe was adapted from the New York Times, contributed by Melissa Clark. GREAT!

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

  • 2 medium red bell peppers, halved and cored (or long red peppers)
  • 1 plum tomato, halved
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/2 cup toasted, peeled hazelnuts, more for garnish
  • 1/2 cup dried breadcrumbs or panko
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar, more as needed
  • 1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses or 1 teaspoon honey, more as needed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons hot smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, more as needed
  • 2 pounds broccoli, cut into bite-sized florets
  1. Toast the hazelnuts in a 425 degree oven for 2 to 3 minutes, or until fragrant. Peel.
  2. Heat the broiler. Arrange an oven rack in the position closest to flame. Place peppers (cut side down), tomato halves (cut-side up) and garlic on a rimmed baking sheet. Broil until peppers and garlic are slightly charred, 3 to 5 minutes. Turn garlic (but do not turn peppers or tomato); broil 1 to 2 minutes longer until garlic is well browned but not burned. Transfer garlic to a large bowl. Continue broiling peppers and tomatoes until both are well charred, 4 to 5 minutes longer. Transfer tomato and peppers to the bowl with the garlic. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let stand until vegetables are cool enough to handle but still warm, then peel peppers and tomatoes.
  3. In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment, pulse hazelnuts until coarsely ground. Add peppers, tomato, garlic, breadcrumbs, oil, vinegar, pomegranate molasses, paprika and salt. Purée until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings. Scrape romesco into a bowl.
  4. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Have ready a large bowl of ice water. Boil broccoli until just tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer to ice water; drain.
  5. In a large bowl, toss broccoli with enough romesco to coat vegetables well. (Reserve any remaining romesco for dipping or for another use.) Garnish with hazelnuts, if desired, and serve warm or at room temperature.

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