Portobello Caps with Romesco Sauce

Sorry, Amy: still no loaf this week.

My friend and blog follower said, “You can’t just give a recipe for gravy and no loaf.” So I foolishly promised her this week I’d post a veggie loaf recipe.

Oh, I tried to perfect Wayne’s loaf recipe mentioned in the gravy post. Let’s just say that even though the new loaf still has no animal products and could safely be eaten raw, there’s something really gross about mushy loaf. Perhaps if I continue to bake and bake and bake the soggy block, eventually it will become more appetizing. The flavor was quite nice. The ingredients are healthy and vegan. But the texture is raw meat.

The solution, I think, is simply less moisture—less of the canned tomatoes. But, dear readers, I could not in good conscience post an untested recipe. Hence, the loaf recipe will follow, eventually. I promise.

This week I thought I’d share an easy spring recipe. I baked the portobellos in the oven because our grill is still encased in snow, but if your grill is uncovered, this would be a great grilled veggie option, the kind where you don’t feel like everyone else is eating charred meat and is really happy and all you have is a sad patty. No, this is the kind of grilled veggie dinner you can serve to your meat-eating friends.

Romesco sauce is a Spanish specialty served over grilled seafood or vegetables. I tasted a fantastic version at a local restaurant and wanted to make it at home. This version, a quick variation on a New York Times recipe is lighter than the restaurant sauce, but works nicely with the portobellos.

Baked Portobello Caps with Romesco Sauce

Makes 4 servings

the portobellos:

  • 4 large portobello caps, rinsed
  • 2 TBS extra virgin olive oil, or more if needed
  • 1 or more TBS red wine vinegar
  1. Preheat the oven to 350
  2. Coat both sides of the mushroom caps with olive oil and then sprinkle with red wine vinegar about twice as much olive oil.
  3. **Start the Romesco sauce while the oven is heating and then continue after you pop the mushrooms in.
  4. Bake the mushrooms 10 minutes with the ribs facing down. Flip so the ribs face up and bake for 20 more minutes, pouring escaped liquid or more oil and vinegar onto the mushrooms if they appear to be getting dry.

Romesco sauce:

  • 1 clove garlic, peeled
  • ¼ cup toasted almonds
  • 1 thick slice of crusty bread, lightly toasted
  • ½ chipotle pepper (from a can in adobo sauce)
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • 1 jarred roasted red pepper
  • 14-ounce can tomatoes (plain or fire-roasted)
  • 1 TBS red wine vinegar
  • 2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
  1. Drop garlic into your food processor first and pulse until it is finely chopped.
  2. Add the almonds and bread and process into a paste.
  3. Plop in the remaining the ingredients and puree.
  4. Taste and add salt and pepper if desired.
  5. If it tastes too much like raw garlic, you can tone it down by simmering the sauce over low heat for ten minutes.
  6. Serve over the mushrooms.


  1. Maybe next week! I’m being patient. Or even better, you could just make it at the house at the Blackwater!

  2. Trying again tonight…hopefully I will have good veg loaf ju ju.

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