Cilantro Pesto

A few months ago, I read an article about how pesto was the ultimate 90s food, though it was so good and such a crowd-pleaser that it’s not going away anytime soon. I’m inclined to agree.

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While basil won’t be in season for a few months, cilantro is a great way to enjoy pesto during the wintertime. It’s bright, vibrant green and fresh flavor makes it a great pick-me-up on a cold winter day. This pesto is also a bit lighter than basil pesto, so don’t feel bad about eating it by the spoonful. I enjoy eating it not only on pasta, but also on pizzas and as a dip for veggies. Anyone have any other ideas for it?

I do have a confession to make though: Greenling has included 1 bunch of cilantro in each delivery for the past few weeks, and because it takes a few bunches of cilantro to make a batch of pesto, it’s taken me a few weeks to make it. The cilantro stayed fresh and perky though because I stored it in my Prepara Herb Savor. I love that thing — I’ve ruined countless batches of herbs by storing it in the crisper and I’ve spilled cups of water in the fridge after keeping the herbs soaking in there. It’s essentially the same thing as the cup of water method, but in an airtight compartment that fits in the fridge door. I highly recommend it! (And no, they didn’t pay me to write this. But I would take another one if Prepara offered. My only complaint is that it’s a bit small.)

Adapted from Simply Recipes

Ingredients:

  • 3 c. cilantro leaves, stems removed
  • 1/4 c. almonds, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 c. red onion, roughly chopped (I used the bottom of the red and white spring onions that Greenling also sent)
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon (though save the other half in case you taste the pesto and it needs more acid)
  • 1 tsp. salt (I ended up needing more, closer to 1-1/2 tsp.)
  • Pepper to taste
  • 1/4 c. olive oil

Directions:

  • Pulse the cilantro, almonds, onion, lemon, salt and pepper in a food processor until combined.
  • Scrape down the sides, then with the food processor running, drizzle in the olive oil.
  • Taste and adjust seasonings as necessary.

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Eat however you like. I spread it on a pita pocket and topped with goat cheese to make a quick “pizza” for lunch.

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