Saturday, November 13, 2010

Name Contest for "Magic Green Paste"

I had a moment of inspired experimenting in the cafe yesterday. The roots included a conversation about the Chow Truck's Cilantro-Chili Pesto*, the arrival of a bunch of beautiful home-grown Italian parsley from Erin's dad, and the memories of the two previous tastebud-popping recipes this week, The Tunisian Spice Swirl and Cilantro Chutney.

Here's what I made - not quite a spice swirl, not quite a chutney, not quite a pesto - but whatever you call it, it was a spicy kick topping the soup of the day (Spiced Butternut Squash Stew) and even delicious plain on brown rice (of course, I'm the one who ate cilantro chutney straight on Sunday, so who am I to judge?)

2 tsp. Olive oil
1/2 jalapeno, minced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbspn. fresh ground coriander 
1 tsp. salt

1 cup parsley leaves
2 cups coarsely chopped cilantro, stems and leaves
1 whole jalapeno, coarsely chopped
6 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/2 cup lemon juice

Saute the minced garlic and jalapeno in the olive oil over medium heat in a small pan, for about two minutes. (Be careful to NOT brown the garlic.) Add the coriander and salt and saute for two minutes more, or until the mixture gets really thick and smells awesome - scientific, aren't I? And seriously, grind the coriander seeds right before you use them. They are definitely one of those spices that quickly loses its ooomph after grinding...

Set aside to cool, and move over to the food processor. Put parsley, cilantro, jalapeno, garlic and pepper in, and 1/2 the lemon juice. Puree, and scrape down sides, and puree some more, adding lemon juice to ease the trouble. Then, add more salt if needed, and there you go: addicting green spicy goodness!

"Magic green paste" just doesn't do it justice. A batch will go to the inventor of the best name - even if I have to overnight it in a cooler to Colorado (you know who you are)!

Eat well and often,

*If you haven't encountered the Chow Truck, you MUST!

** Here's a pic of the green paste in action: dolloped on the spiced squash stew...

1 comment:

  1. I doubt that "spicy love" does it justice either, I guess that I need to have some to really be inspired