Salsa di Noce (Walnut Sauce)

This week I hosted book club and was happy to share the food love. For inspiration, I turned to one of my newer cookbooks, Cucina Ebraica: Flavors of the Italian Jewish Kitchen by Joyce Goldstein.  I have been eyeing the Salsa di Noce recipe for several weeks, not sure how to use this scrumptious sauce.  It is a combination of Italian salsa verde (see emmycooks for a tasty version) and a Sephardic nut sauce, and is full of flavor.  The author describes it as “fragrant and voluptuous” – anytime the word voluptuous is used to describe food you know it has to be good. Judging by the almost empty bowl at book club, I think it was a hit. Toasted, chopped walnuts are combined with fruity olive oil, parsley, garlic, hard-boiled egg yolks, kalamata olives and capers to create a flavorful and rich sauce that is worthy of spooning on anything.  For book club I served it with roasted carrots, parsnips and potatoes along with some hard-boiled eggs.  The Salsa di Noce would make a seared halibut filet very happy as well.  Or use it as a tapenade on a pan bagnat sandwich (see bobvivant for her recipe adaptation).  The recipe makes a generous 2 cups, but for two foodies I would recommend reducing the recipe by half as a little goes a long way.

Now I have something to nosh on while reading our next book club selection – maybe I’ll add some crusty bread with the Salsa di Noce along with a glass of wine….all the makings for a happy foodie! 

Eat well and share the love!

Salsa di Noce (Walnut Sauce)
By Joyce Goldstein
Cucina Ebraica: Flavors of the Italian Jewish Kitchen
Makes about 2 cups

3 hard-boiled egg yolks, chopped
1 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
3/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 cloves garlic, finely minced (I used 1 clove)
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
4 tablespoons chopped, pitted Mediterranean-style black olives
1 tablespoon capers, rinsed and chopped

In a bowl, combine all ingredients and whisk to mix well.

Denver: Infinite Monkey Theorem’s Malbec wine (my favorite!) at the October RiNo first Friday event; they are a neighborhood winery with national acclaim.  The evening was punctuated with Boulder’s Basta Eatery & Pizzeria who fired up their mobile pizza oven to serve mouth-watering artisanal pizzas.  Hope they have it again in November!  Don’t miss it.

6 responses to “Salsa di Noce (Walnut Sauce)

  1. Melissa. I am reading this in front of Paolo’s walnut grove,very inspiring.
    I love a Mendoza Malbec but you have to a great steak from the Argentine with it. Chris

  2. You had me at voluptuous…I love walnuts AND all the other ingredients so this will be a must try! Thanks for including the book cover of your latest read – I’m always looking for new titles to try. Don’t forget the Kristen Cashore series “Graceling”, “Fire” and “Bitterblue”!

    • The toasted walnuts are what initially drew my attention to the recipe. They add a flavor boost and when combined with the rest of the ingredients, the sauce really is “fragrant and voluptuous”! Hmmm….I bet it would also be fantastic with your favorite, quinoa. Thanks for the reminder on the books, too!

  3. This sounds amazing! I love the idea of serving it with roasted veggies and eggs. I may have to make this tonight!

    • I think you will like this one. For lunch I made smashed baby red potatoes and loved how the sauce contrasted with the crispy skin and soft, buttery inside. I’m sure you’ll come up with some creative ways to enjoy this sauce!

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