Friday, July 24, 2015

Creamy Cilantro Dip & Dressing


Creamy Cilantro Dressing
Needless to say that we adore this dressing :-) ~ since I keep making quantities of it often! It goes well with green salads with lots of crunchy veggies; our favorite is with main salad meals - the Mexican themed Fiesta Salad for an example. I make a large jar of it and it lasts for a few days of pleasure. It is great as a dip for fresh veggies or as a topping for home-made nachos too.

Fiesta Salad with Frijoles De La Olla
I add a small piece of apple instead of the typical addition of sugar which mellows the bite as well as for a subtle sweetness. Remove and discard cores from chiles if you like the dressing to be mild; if you like it spicy, leave cores in or add more chiles - adjust as you like. The nuts not only give the dressing creaminess, they also add to the body. Feel free to adjust the various ingredients to suit your own taste and requirements; but do try making it.

Pick the key limes that are a little golden (indication of maturity - I think the mature limes are more flavorful than the hard green ones) and heavy for their size; the heavier they are, the more juicier they will be!

Although not a requirement, a high speed blender makes it a breeze; traditional or hand blenders will work fine too. 

Makes about 1 cup (Dressing will stay fresh for about a week)

Ingredients:

1 bunch Fresh Cilantro/Coriander
1-3 Fresh Serrano/Jalapeno chiles, stemmed and cored
1-2 cloves fresh Garlic
1 slice fresh Onion
1/2 small apple, cored
1/4 cup Pumpkin Seeds, Cashews, Almonds, or Peanuts
1 tsp Sea Salt
Freshly ground Black Pepper
2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2-3 Key Limes, juiced
Water, as required

Method:

If the seeds or nuts are raw, the two options are to use them raw or toasted. If raw, soaking them for a couple of hours or up to overnight will be beneficial. They may be purchased already roasted or roasted at home in the oven or in a dry skillet - either way it should take a few minutes.

Wash and drain the herbs, chiles, garlic, etc. Trim chiles, peel garlic; keep most of the stems of cilantro - just trim the stem ends.

Place the first nine of the ingredients in the carafe of a blender; add half the lime juice and just a couple of tablespoons of water.

Process the dressing until finely pureed and pulverized into a smooth dressing. Scrape down the sides of the carafe with a rubber spatula. Add a little more water as required to facilitate blending.

Taste; adjust the taste with more lime juice, salt, etc.

Pour dressing into a clean glass jar; swirl the carafe with a couple of tablespoons of water to gather up every bit of the dressing and pour into the jar.

Stir well, and thin more with water if necessary.

Taste and adjust with more lime juice or salt as needed.

Drizzle on the salad and mix well.

Eat and Enjoy!!

Creamy Cilantro Dressing With Salad

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