Cilantro Salsa

After what seemed like rain every weekend for months, I finally made it back to the Marin County Farmer’s Market on Sunday morning. Everything looked beautiful and bursting with color and vitality.  This would be a good time to insert a lovely photo or two of the market but I forgot to bring my camera!

When I saw huge bunches of cilantro I decided to make Cilantro Salsa. I’ve purchased several variations of this delicious condiment and a few years ago created my own version.  It is lively with garlic, ginger and chile, a bit salty, a bit sweet, bright with lime juice and mellow with peanut butter.  I like it on just about any vegetable dish, mixed into salad dressing, and as a topping on grilled chicken or fish.  It is wonderful with curry, tastes great on naan bread and works well stirred into yogurt as a dip (See dip recipe following the salsa).  I’ve even had it with scrambled eggs.

Cilantro Salsa

Ingredients

1 tsp salt

2 tsp sugar

1 inch chunk of fresh ginger, peeled

2 large cloves garlic

1/2 to 1 serrano chile, seeds removed (optional)

2 large bunches cilantro, trim ends off stems

juice of 2 limes

1 to 3 Tbsp peanut butter (I used crunchy, unsalted peanut butter from Trader Joe’s and prefer the higher amount of PB though the lower amount is more like the first recipe I tried)

Instructions

  1. In bowl of food processor, combine salt, sugar, garlic, ginger and chile. You can omit the chile for a milder dish but I think it benefits from at least 1/2 a serrano chile. Process until finely minced.  Scrape down bowl if necessary.
  2. Add cilantro and process until it is very finely chopped, again scraping bowl sides as needed.
  3. Add peanut butter and lime juice and process until well-combined.
  4. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.

Keeps well in fridge in a covered container.

I’ve made this with green garlic instead of regular, lemon juice instead of lime and sometimes without the chile pepper and every version is yummy.

The picture above is a piece of sauteed cod with Cilantro Salsa.  On the side is Brussels sprouts and kale stir-fried with red cabbage, carrots, beets and a little apple.

Yogurt Cilantro Dip

Ingredients

2 Tbsp Cilantro Salsa

1/3 cup whole milk Greek yogurt

1 Tbsp mayonaise

A little lemon juice (start with about 1 tsp and add more to taste)

Instruction

  • Combine the ingredients in a small bowl and serve with raw veggies.



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