Broccolini accentuates and complements all kinds of add-ons, like this light, herbaceous and spicy romesco. Add some toasted nuts and this is a tick-all-the-boxes kind of dish. This recipe makes 4 cups of romesco, more than you need, but it keeps well in the fridge and is all kinds of useful: toss it through pasta, slap it on a ham sandwich, dollop it on roast chicken or grilled steak or serve with some crudites to snack on.
3 bunches broccolini
1-2 tbsp olive oil
juice of ½ lemon
¼ cup pinenuts, toasted
4 red capsicums
2 red onions, peeled and chopped
1 fresh jalapeno chilli
2 cloves garlic
2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
½ preserved lemon
1 cup smoked almonds
½ small bunch coriander, leaves and stalks washed thoroughly
salt and pepper to season
1. For the romesco, preheat the oven to 210C. Place the capsicums and onions on a baking tray lined with baking paper and roast for 15-25 minutes or until the capsicums are charred and beginning to blister. Turn the veg midway through roasting.
2. Allow the capsicums to cool slightly, then peel off the skins and remove the seeded core. Add the onion, capsicum and any juices to a blender with the remaining romesco ingredients and pulse until fully incorporated. Taste and adjust seasoning – it should be spicy and slightly acidic. Reserve 1 cup and store the remainder in the fridge for up to two weeks.
3. For the broccolini, toss the broccolini in the olive oil and lemon juice. Place an ovenproof frying pan over medium heat, add the broccolini and cook on each side for 1 minute until it gets some colour. Flip the stems over then place the frypan in the oven for 2 to 3 minutes or until cooked to your liking.
4. Dollop the romesco generously over a serving plate. Top with the broccolini stems and scatter with pinenuts. Season with salt and pepper and serve warm.