Friday, November 22, 2013

Cilantro

While living in Ecuador, we gained a love for cilantro. Unlike the cilantro that is typically sold in the United States,


Ecuadorian cilantro is slow to bolt, has thinner leaves, and a different flavor. We now grow both types. The Ecuadorian variety has less of the soapy taste that some cilantro foes complain about. 


The flowers of the cilantro plant are also pretty in a small vase. 



Aliño Recipe

Aliño is a very popular seasoning in Ecuador. We now make our own, with the addition of cilantro.

First, we separate the cloves of a head of garlic


An easy way to completely remove the peels is to remove the peeling with your hands that is very easy to remove and then soak the cloves in water with 1/4 c of baking soda for 20 minutes. 




After soaking, the remaining peel will remove easily

I then remove the leaves from the cilantro. 


I puree the garlic, cilantro, 1 T of cumin, 1 T of sunflower seed oil (optional) and a dash of salt. Add water if necessary to achieve a sauce like consistency. Typically, Aliño is made without cilantro, but I like the flavor with it added. 



This will store in the refrigerator for a couple of weeks. We add this to our Seco de Pollo chicken dish , pinchos (meat on a stick), and chicken empanada filling. It gives an Ecuadorian flavor to most any dish. 


You can also add this to mayonnaise, which makes a great dipping sauce for beef, potatoes, and vegetables. 


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