Whilst I was studying the neuro-protective abilities of cilantro, turmeric and black pepper in this study, and an idea popped into my head for this recipe: cilantro pesto … a spicy twist with a huge healthy boost on the classic Italian pesto! And as I mention in my post here, the Anti-Alzheimer and heavy metal detoxifying ability of cilantro leaf truly makes this a delight for your brain! Enjoy!
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- 2 cups packed cilantro or one big bunch
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/4 cup roasted nuts or seeds
- 1 tablespoon lime juice or apple cider vinegar (optional)
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese or 1/4 cup of nutritional yeast
- 1/3 – 2/3 cup coconut oil until desired consistency is reached
- 1 tablespoon turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- salt to taste
Place cilantro, garlic, roasted nuts or seeds, lime juice, turmeric, pepper and Parmesan into a food processor.
Pulse until smooth and scrape down the sides.
With your food processor running, add your coconut oil until your desired consistency has been reached.
Season with salt, pulse to combine, and serve with pasta, cheese and crackers, etc.
Store in the refrigerator.
- Use the cilantro stalks too! They are packed with flavour. Though if they are long, chop them off and use them for juicing, in smoothies or stir frying with some other vegetables (like carrots and onions with cumin seeds … yum!)
- The parmesan or nutritional yeast add the savoury umami flavor to pesto. Nutritional yeast, which tastes like tangy cheese, is also extremely high in B vitamins
- To prepare the nuts or seeds, follow my guidelines on for soaking, roasting, and grinding into a nut butter
- Prepare this at least a day ahead of using it. This will allow the flavours to develop much better