Culinista Kitchen®,  Recipes & Cooking

HQ’s Fave Culinista Side: Romesco Romanesco

by The Culinistas

We do a lot of thinking about food around these parts, and a lot of eating, too. More often than not our office Slacks are about the Culinista dishes we’re loving right now, none more so than our Romesco Romanesco.

Channeling Stefon from SNL, this dish has everything: it’s packed with veg, full of flavor, and perfect for grabbing and going. Culinista Co-Founder Jill Donenfeld agrees: “My favorite Culinista side dish for the fall is our Romesco Romanesco.” 

Here’s how Jill breaks down this stunner of a dish: “Romesco is the sauce: red peppers, carrots, hazelnuts, sherry vin. The Romanesco is the colorful cousin of cauliflower. Alliteration, a veg-based sauce, and a roasted brassica are a recipe to delight me.”

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Romesco Romanesco

Prep Time 20 mins 

Cook Time 30 mins 

Serves 4


Thin out the sauce with water from the soaked hazelnuts if needed.

– Romesco should be bright & acid forward from the sherry vinegar to balance the sweetness in the sauce from the roasted carrots.

1 red bell pepper, chopped

2 carrots, tops reserved, peeled, chopped

½ cup olive oil, divided

½ tsp cumin, ground

½ tsp onion powder

¼ tsp cayenne

1 head romanesco, broken down into small florets

½ cup hazelnuts, toasted, chopped, divided

2 TB sherry vinegar

Salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste

1. Preheat oven to 375ºF.

2. On a parchment-lined baking sheet, separately toss peppers & carrots with 2 TB oil, cumin, onion powder, cayenne, salt & pepper. Roast until the peppers are tender, 15 mins. Transfer the peppers to a plate & set aside; continue to roast carrots until tender, 15 mins more.

3. On a separate parchment-lined baking sheet, toss romanesco with 2 TB oil, salt & pepper. Roast until tender, 20-25 mins. Set aside.

4. While the vegetables roast, soak the hazelnuts. In a small bowl, cover ¼ cup hazelnuts with warm water. Let sit 10 mins; strain.

5. In a high speed blender, blend roasted peppers & carrots, soaked hazelnuts & vinegar. While the motor is running, stream in the remaining ¼ cup oil. Season with salt & pepper.

6. Spoon the sauce on a serving platter. Place the roasted romanesco on top; garnish with carrot tops & remaining ¼ cup hazelnuts.

Cumin, Onion Powder & Cayenne are a chef’s secret weapons. Check out our eComm shop to purchase our favorite brand.