5/4/2023 | By Diane Rossen Worthington

Springtime marks asparagus season, when they are easily available and reasonably priced. Roasted asparagus offers one of the healthiest and easiest ways to prepare these seasonal vegetables. This recipe includes a lusty romesco sauce, for more delightful flavor.

You’ll want to select asparagus that are all the same thickness so they will cook evenly. Very fresh asparagus will have closed tips and slightly moist ends. Look for medium spears, so you don’t need to peel them, and make sure to trim off the tough woody part. It’s best to cook them soon after purchasing so they will be at their optimum flavor and sweetness. This roasting technique makes sure they keep their vibrant green color.

This recipe is topped with a lusty romesco sauce. This Catalonian-style sauce — made from roasted red peppers, garlic, sherry vinegar and almonds — may be made up to one week in advance and stored in a container in the fridge. If you are pressed for time, look for roasted and peeled jarred roasted peppers.

Any leftover sauce can be tossed with pasta, spooned over eggs, spread on toast, or drizzled on steamed or roasted veggies. You can also freeze it in ice trays for later use. Spanish Marcona almonds are used here for their unique creamy texture and sweet flavor. The chopped almonds and parsley add just the right garnish. I like to serve this warm as a first course. You can double the recipe and serve it chilled or at room temperature.

Related: Asparagus is delightfully nutritious, too!

Warm Asparagus with Romesco Sauce

Serves 4


  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh medium asparagus spears, trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup Romesco Sauce (see following recipe)
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley, for garnish
  • Chopped Marcona almonds, for garnish


  1. Preheat oven to 450 F. Place the asparagus spears on a parchment-lined baking sheet and toss with the oil and salt and pepper so they are evenly coated.
  2. Roast for about 12 minutes or until tender and very slightly browned. The time will depend upon how thick the asparagus are. The asparagus should still be bright green.
  3. Using tongs, place the asparagus on a platter and spoon romesco sauce over. Sprinkle with parsley and chopped Marcona almonds; serve warm.

Romesco Sauce

Makes about 1 1/2 cups

roasted asparagus

Note: This roasted pepper, garlic, and almond sauce is quite versatile and beautifully compliments the sweetness of the shrimp. Any leftover sauce is also wonderful as a dip for vegetables or a finishing sauce on any grilled fish, chicken, or meat.


  • 1/2 cup roasted sweet red peppers, peeled and seeded
  • 3 tablespoons Marcona almonds
  • 1 slice white bread, crusts removed and cut into small pieces
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon pimento de la vera, dulce (dried red pepper) or paprika or smoked paprika
  • 2 tablespoons Sherry vinegar
  • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


In a blender combine all the ingredients except for the oil, salt and pepper and blend until pureed. Add the oil in slowly and blend until the mixture is emulsified. Add salt and pepper; add a little water if too thick. Taste for seasoning. Reserve.

Advance preparation: This sauce may be prepared up to one week ahead, covered in an airtight container and refrigerated. Before serving, remove from refrigerator and stir to emulsify the ingredients.

Diane Rossen Worthington is an authority on new American cooking. She is the author of 18 cookbooks, including “Seriously Simple Parties,” and a James Beard Award-winning radio show host. You can contact her at

©2023 Diane Rossen Worthington. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

Check out other deliciously savory recipes like this one: Mediterranean Potato Gratin

Diane Rossen Worthington

Diane Rossen Worthington is an authority on new American cooking. She is the author of 18 cookbooks, including “Seriously Simple Parties,” and a James Beard Award-winning radio show host. You can contact her at