I’ve never been a fan of cilantro, let’s just throw that out there before we get started with this recipe. It is a common belief that the aversion to cilantro is genetically passed down to us from our ancestors, and I know for a fact that my grandmother hates cilantro. But I have decided to overcome this sensitivity. There are just too many wonderful dishes that include cilantro that I didn’t want to avoid–salsas and salad dressings, enchiladas and falafel wraps…the list goes on and on.
I have been easing myself in to ordering dishes with cilantro and trying to accommodate it into meals that I make at home. But now it is cilantro season on the farm and I don’t want to miss out on any delicious opportunity, so I decided to dive right in. I decided to make the most flavorful thing that I could think of with my big bunch cilantro.
Cilantro pesto is a creative take on basil pesto, but you can use it in so many ways. It is delicious on pasta, as a topping for sandwiches, mixed with cottage cheese as a dip for tortilla chips, and even as a saute for chicken or fish. I made it the traditional way with pasta and it was amazing! It still might not be my favorite flavor, but cilantro is definitely growing on me!
- Prep time: 15 minutes/Serves 4
You can add more serrano chiles if you like things hot. A full teaspoon will give you a nice, warm pesto.
- 2 cups, packed, of cilantro, large stems removed
- 1/2 cup blanched almonds
- 1/4 cup chopped red onion
- 1/2 teaspoon chopped and seeded serrano chile
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 package of fusili noodles
For the pesto. . .
- Boil water for pasta.
- KIDS! Wash cilantro and remove stems.
- Chop onion and serrano.
- Add to a food processor,
- KIDS! Pulse the cilantro, almonds, onion, chile, and salt until well blended.
- With the food processor running, slowly add the olive oil in a steady stream.
- Add more oil as needed for your use.
Makes about 1 cup.
- Add pasta to boiling water, stir with a tablespoon of olive oil.
- Reduce to simmer, cook until tender (about 10 minutes).
- Strain pasta and pour into large bowl.
- KIDS! Mix with pesto and top with parmesen cheese.
Serve and enjoy!