There is something unsatisfying about firing up the grill to cook just one thing so we love dishes that make full use of the fire once it’s lit. Here we grill the vegetables that would normally be roasted to make a Romesco sauce, adding a layer of smoky, charred flavor to the dish. The timing works out perfectly. You can grill the vegetables, then grill the chicken while you’re making the Romesco, and finally grill the bread while the chicken rests. The bold flavor of the Romesco is carried wonderfully by the mild grilled chicken, and the whole dish is elevated by pairing it with the crisp yet full-bodied Mira Rosé of Pinot Noir 2019.
Grilled Chicken with Romesco Sauce & Grilled Bread
Mira Rosé of Pinot Noir 2019
2 chicken breasts
2 red bell peppers
2 small yellow onions
4 cloves garlic
3/4 cup almond slivers
Extra-virgin olive oil
Preheat the grill. For charcoal, pile the pieces on one side of the grill once they’ve been lit in a chimney starter and then carefully spread them unevenly so that one side offers less intense heat. Similarly, if using gas then set one side to high and the other to medium-low. Using tongs and a vegetable oil-soaked paper towel, oil the hot grill grates to prevent sticking.
Preheat the oven to 350˚ F. Toast the almonds in a pan, tossing occasionally, until they are light brown and fragrant. Set aside to cool.
Cut the flesh of the peppers away from the seeds and trim off any white pith that remains. Peel the onions and cut into wedges or slices, whatever will sit best on your grill grate. Toss all the vegetables in vegetable oil and season generously with salt. Start on the hotter side of the grill to achieve a nice char then move to the cooler side to finish cooking with the lid closed. Once all the vegetables are tender and nicely browned, remove from the grill and set aside to cool.
Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper, and rub with vegetable oil. Re-oil the grill grates then place the chicken on the hot side of the grill. Cook for about 2 minutes, then rotate the breasts 90 degrees to create a nice crosshatch pattern and cook 2 minutes more. Flip the breasts and repeat the same process on the second side. When all the breasts are nicely marked, move them over to the cooler side of the grill and cook with the lid closed until their internal temperature reaches 160˚ F. Remove and set aside to rest, loosely tented in foil.
While the chicken is cooking, combine the peppers, onion, and garlic in a food processor or blender and pulse to until roughly combined. Add olive oil as needed to achieve a sauce that is thick but spreadable. Add the almonds and pulse until just combined, leaving the sauce somewhat chunky.
Cut bread into thick slices and rub olive oil into both sides. Grill until toasted and nicely marked. Fans of garlic can rub the freshly toasted bread with peeled cloves of garlic.
Slice the chicken breast into pieces about 1 inch thick and serve with Romesco sauce and slices of grilled bread.