Thursday, August 16, 2012

Cilantro Mint Sauce

Can I just share that this week has been not so easy for sleep?  Nora and I both have been restless and so there have been 2 separate nights/days where I wasn't headed to bed until 4:30 a.m.  Insane, yes.  So, because of that, we haven't been doing exceedingly well when it comes to meals.  Simple fare (sometimes Trader Joe frozen goods) has been the menu, with dinner at Carma's last night (before my knitting group), and tonight we ordered Indian takeaway.

However, last night I made lunch for today and I whipped up a batch of Afghan Cilantro Mint Sauce to go on top.  The salad is simple boiled red potatoes, kidney beans, chickpeas, and fresh tomato with this sauce on top.  Delicious and oh so filling.  It would also be perfect as a side to a simple baked white fish and green salad.  I was trying to find a recipe for the sauce and came across this one on Vegan Eats and Treats and adapted it to suit us a bit.

Afghan Cilantro Mint Sauce

1 clove of garlic
1/2 c walnuts (could use other nuts, including the traditional pesto ingredient, pine nuts)
1 c. cilantro leaves, semi-packed (I used quite a bit of cilantro)
1/2 c. mint leaves, semi-packed
4 scallions, chopped (my scallions were crazy and offshooting so I just chopped up a lot and went by taste)
3 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp vinegar
1/2 tsp salt (I used a heaping 1/2 tsp of kosher salt)
1/2 tsp black pepper
1-2 Tbsp water, as needed (I thought it definitely needed at least 2, and next time I will probably add a third and blend more smoothly)

I used my Magimix food processor (more on my love for that later), and mixed up the garlic and the walnuts, added everything else and pureed.  It makes approx. a cup, and is delicious on sandwiches as well, or grilled chicken.

You could also totally mix with a bit of greek yogurt to make it into a dressing for a green salad.  I think we'll be trying that as we have plenty left over!

Afghan food is amazing and definitely something I recommend!  If you're interested in reading more about our first experience with Afghan food here in Baltimore, hit up my post Perfection from when we first moved here (we were actually still living in a hotel!).  It has some great photos of the food, including this salad there.

Living here we've discovered Afghan, Ethiopian, and Thai food.  Do you have a favorite ethnic food?


  1. Great post!

    I also recently discovered Ethiopian food and really love it. There is a restaurant near where I work, and finally my colleagues had to say that I was NOT allowed to pick the place where we had team lunches as they were so sick of Ethiopian! Have never tried Afghan food.

    Another favourite is Georgian. There is a chicken dish called Chicken Satsivi which features a sauce of crushed walnuts and pomegranates. That is heaven.

  2. This looks delicious! I'm going to make it for my husband's lunch.
    And let's see... my favorite ethic food is either Thai or Indian. I'd love some Thai right now!