Thursday, September 30, 2010

Cilantro pesto

It's only within the last year or so that I've experimented with pesto beyond the classic basil/pine nut/parmesan combination. This stellar cilantro pesto is by far the best one I've come across (although obviously not for the cilantro-haters out there). The pesto gets an Asian twist with ingredients like soy sauce and sesame oil, which makes for a really interesting and tasty sauce. I like to eat it with soba noodles and tofu, but I bet it would be great on chicken as well. It's definitely a quick and easy way to spice up a meal.

Notes on the recipe: I don't bother removing the cilantro leaves from the stems. It's all going in the food processor anyway, so why bother? Also, I use peanuts instead of pine nuts, and I think cashews would work as well. 

Cilantro pesto
Adapted from Gourmet Today
Serves 4

1/4 cup mild olive or vegetable oil
2 cups packed fresh cilantro leaves
2 tbs pine nuts
1 tbs fresh lime juice
2 tsp soy sauce (GT suggests using fish sauce instead for deeper flavor)
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth. Serve with tofu, chicken, rice, or noodles. Pesto freezes well.

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