Saturday, April 29, 2006

As Long as I'm on an Herb Roll...

Looking at the 2 bunches of parsley and cilantro left over from making last night's dinner, pesto came to mind. Frozen cubes of it to toss into a soup or with a (low carb) pasta; to thaw and use as a spread on garlic toasts or to dip your favorite veggie into. The list is practically unlimited.

This recipe was adapted from my recently acquired "Seasonal Southwest Cooking" by Barbara Pool Fenzl. A beautifully photographed and presented cookbook packed with mouth-watering recipes of the American southwest persuasion.

Cilantro Pecan Pesto
1 cup toasted pecans
1 cup grana padano, (or other parmesan cheese) broken into pieces
1 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves (some small stems okay)
1 cup packed fresh, flat-leaf parsley leaves
2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne, depending on your heat tolerance
1 teaspoon toasted cumin seeds
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Place all ingredients except olive oil, salt and pepper into a food processor and pulse until blended but still coarse.
Pour in the olive oil and continue to pulse until a beautiful green paste forms. You don't want this too smooth; it should still have granular bits in it. Add salt and pepper to taste, pulsing briefly to blend.

If using the same day, place in a glass bowl and cover with plastic wrap until ready to use. Alternatively, fill non-stick mini muffin tins almost full and freeze, uncovered. When frozen, pop the pesto out of the tins and freeze in
a zip-top freezer bag. Allow to sit at room temperature to thaw.


  1. Hi Christine....I'm "Smitten" with your photography of food and flowers!!! How 'bout a blog entry on your "process" and some of your "tricks" for the great photos we are may not realize it but your photos are WOW quality and composition...Bill in Winters

  2. Bill, Thank you for your words of praise. I wish I could say I spend multiple minutes setting up each shot, agonizing over angle and light, but the truth is my little wonder of a camera is practically idiot-proof and if it had opposing digits could take the photos without me!
    As to composition: I just shoots 'em as I sees 'em.

    Camera: Canon PowerShot SD450 Digital ELPH.

  3. Super idea to make a batch of pesto and freeze it in muffin tins. I am going to give that a try!

  4. One thing I would suggest, that I didn't do this time, is to spray the tins with a shot of Pam. This will make it easier to pop out the pesto.

  5. Of course you didn't actually have Jeff for dinner, but you did have me over for dinner. I can only tell you that it tasted as good as it looked... including the lunch burritos Clay made of the left overs.

    As to photos, I have always maintained that good photography is 10% having the right equipment,10% is understanding how to use the equipment, 30% is being in the right place at the right time, and 50% of good photograhy is knowing when you are in the right place at the right time.

    What a talent, Christine! Who Knew?


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