- For the Romesco Sauce:
- 1/4cup olive oil
- 1head garlic, roasted
- 1/2cup Marcona almonds
- 1/2cup roasted hazelnuts
- 1(1 1/2-inch) slice crusty bread, toasted
- 1can (~15 oz) fire roasted tomatoes, drained and rinsed of seeds
- 10whole fire-roasted piquillo peppers
- 3tsp sweet smoked paprika
- 2-3tbsp sherry vinegar
- 1/4cup fresh lemon juice
- 1tsp sea salt
- For the Skewers and Marinade:
- 1 1/2lbs chicken (boneless and skinless, cut into 1-1 ½-inch pieces)
- 1/4cup table salt
- 6cups hot water
- 4tbsp smoked olive oil
- 2-3fresh lemons (about ½ cup juice for marinade)
- 2tbsp honey with orange peel or regular honey
- 3garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
- 1tsp sweet smoked paprika
- 1tsp hot smoked paprika, if you want the chicken a bit spicier
- 1tbsp fresh thyme leaves or 1 ½ tsp dried thyme
- 3/4tsp ground ginger
- 3/4tsp ground cinnamon
- 3/4tsp ground coriander
- 3/4tsp ground cayenne pepper
- 1/2tsp ground cumin
- 1/4tsp each ground allspice and ground cloves
- 1/2tsp each sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4slices bacon cut into ~1-inch pieces (about 18 pieces)
- 1red pepper, deseeded and cut into 1-inch squares
- 1yellow pepper, deseeded and cut into 1-inch squares
- 1medium sweet white onion peeled, halved and cut into quarters
- Skewers (soaked in water 30 minutes if wooden)
For the Romesco Sauce:
Preheat oven to 400°F. Rub off any excess skin from the head of garlic and cut ½ inch from the top. Place garlic on a piece of foil large enough to enclose the garlic well. Drizzle the cut top of the garlic with olive oil and lightly rub it into the cloves. Bring the corners of the foil up and twist tightly (making sure the foil is not touching the top of the garlic). Roast in the oven for about 30 minutes. Unwrap and let rest until needed.
Place the almonds and hazelnuts into a food processor and pulse until finely ground. Tear toasted bread into pieces and pulse with the nuts until fine.
While the food processor is running on medium speed, add the tomatoes, roasted piquillo peppers, roasted garlic (squeezed from its skins) and the remainder of the ingredients except olive oil and vinegar. Process until the sauce is a thick purée.
With the processor still running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil and 2 tbsp of the vinegar. Add salt and more vinegar to taste. Transfer to a serving bowl, cover and chill until needed. The sauce will keep refrigerated for up to one week.
For the Chicken and Marinade:
Begin by brining the chicken (optional). Add 4 cups hot water to a large pot and dissolve the ¼ cup table salt. Add chicken pieces and allow to brine for 20-30 minutes.
In a large mixing bowl, make marinade by whisking together olive oil, lemon juice, honey, garlic and spices. Reserve ¼ cup marinade in a separate small bowl.
Drain the chicken from the brine (if using) and add chicken pieces to a bowl or large freezer bag. Pour marinade over chicken, cover bowl or press air out of the bag and seal tightly. Gently squeeze and turn the bag to distribute the marinade around the chicken evenly. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.
Thread one piece of chicken, bacon slice, pepper, and onions (keep onions to 2 to 3 layers of thickness) in alternate fashion, rotating the color of peppers. Repeat process until you have 6 kebabs.
Preheat outdoor grill. Spray or wipe grill rack with oil and cook the skewers over high heat for 3-4 minutes per side, basting with reserved marinade and turning 2-3 times so chicken cooks evenly. Cook until the chicken is nicely charred and is firm to the touch.
Serve with romesco sauce and a glass of Spanish white or rosé wine.