June 3rd, 2011 - Jill Ettinger
Random USDA produce tests showed at least 34 unapproved pesticides on samples of fresh cilantro that were not removed with washing, according to an article in the Chicago Tribune.
Read More:Dozens of Unapproved Toxic Pesticides Found on Fresh Cilantro
November 10th, 2010 - Barbara Feiner
Twenty-three products that contain cilantro—including Trader Joe’s salad dressings and California Pizza Kitchen packaged salads—have been recalled because they may be contaminated with salmonella.
Food packager Orval Kent has taken action because the 43,814 pounds of cilantro it purchased from EpicVeg, Inc., may be tainted with the bacterium.
The affected products were distributed at retail stores nationwide. No illnesses have been reported to date.
If you have purchased any of the following items, do not consume them. Return them to the place of purchase for a full refund or replacement.
Read More:23 Dressings, Salads, Salsas Recalled Over Tainted Cilantro Concerns
September 21st, 2010 - Barbara Feiner
For decades, American cooks relegated sprigs of parsley to throwaway garnishes on the sides of sad-looking dinner plates.
More recently, herb-savvy cooks have recognized parsley’s clean, fresh flavor—an essential ingredient in dishes like Gremolata-Crusted Fish Fillets, Orange-Parsley Hummus and Braised Mushrooms with Herbs.
Cilantro, often called Chinese parsley, adds a distinctive flavor to Thai and Latin American cuisine, and I encourage you to experiment with easy recipes like Tequila-Lime Corn & Bean Salad, Thai Roasted Squash Soup (right) and Garlic Snow Peas with Cilantro.
Read More:Green Showdown: Parsley vs. Cilantro
September 19th, 2010 - Barbara Feiner
We celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15, and the easiest way to learn the culture is to immerse yourself in its cusine.
Fortunately for North Americans, Latin fruits and veggies have become quite accessible, and just about anyone can prepare an authentic meal.
You’ll also need to keep seven important herbs and spices on hand.
Read More:7 Must-Have Hispanic Herbs and Spices
May 4th, 2010 - Barbara Feiner
Whether you’re celebrating Mother’s Day with a home-cooked brunch or taking Mom to her favorite restaurant, start the celebration with this trendy cocktail.
Cilantro, ginger and lime add an exotically flavorful flair. Prep time is only 5 minutes, and all of the ingredients should be available at a well-stocked natural and organic food store.
Write a special toast for Mom, and you’re good to go!
Cilantro Lime Fizz
Makes 2 servings
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
2 ounces gin
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro leaves (without stems)
1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract (not imitation extract)
1 cup ginger beer
Fresh cilantro sprigs
- Mix lime juice, gin, cilantro leaves and almond extract in a cocktail shaker with a muddler or wooden spoon, until cilantro is crushed.
- Add 2 cups ice cubes; shake until well mixed and chilled.
- To serve, strain over ice cubes in highball glasses. Fill glasses with ginger beer.
- Garnish with cilantro sprigs.
Recipe and photo courtesy of McCormick
Read More:Cilantro Lime Fizz
March 8th, 2010 - Barbara Feiner
Snow peas, also called Chinese pea pods, are often overlooked as a highly nutritious organic vegetable.
A 1-cup serving of whole snow peas has only 26 calories and 0 fats, while meeting the following daily requirements:
- Vitamin C: 63%
- Vitamin A: 14%
- Iron: 7%
- Fiber: 3 g
Steaming snow peas, or cooking them in an oil that’s low in saturated fat and free of trans fat, is one of the best ways to reduce your risk of heart disease. In today’s recipe, canola oil is a best bet.
All of the ready-for-spring ingredients should be available at your local natural and organic food store.
Garlic Snow Peas with Cilantro
Makes 6 servings (1/2 cup each)
3 teaspoons canola oil, divided
3 cups fresh (or frozen and thawed) snow peas, patted dry and trimmed
4 medium cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
- Working in two batches, heat 1½ teaspoons canola oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add half of the snow peas; cook 3 minutes or until just beginning to brown on edges, using two utensils to toss easily. Add half of garlic and cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Set aside on a separate plate.
- Repeat with remaining 1½ teaspoons canola oil, snow peas and garlic.
- When cooked, return the reserved snow peas to skillet; add salt and cilantro, and toss gently, yet thoroughly. Serve immediately for peak flavors.
Nutritional Information (per serving): 45 calories, 20 calories from fat, 2.5 g total fat, 0.2 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 100 mg sodium, 4 g total carbohydrate, 2 g dietary fiber, 2 g sugars, 2 g protein
Recipe and photo courtesy of canolainfo.org
Read More:Garlic Snow Peas with Cilantro
November 6th, 2009 - Barbara Feiner
Veggie burgers remain an underutilized alternative to meat. Our weekend recipe features the black bean variety, which brings some south-of-the-border flavor to your table.
Combining poblano peppers, black beans, rice, cilantro and queso fresco (a staple in many Mexican dishes), this entrée was created by Chef Alex Eusebio, a Top Chef contestant (Season 5) and former partner/executive chef at the now-defunct Restaurant 15 in Los Angeles.
All of the ingredients should be available at your local natural and organic food store.
Makes 6 servings
6 medium poblano peppers
4 black bean veggie burgers
1/2 cup finely chopped onions
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
3/4 cup cooked black beans (drained and rinsed if you’re using canned beans)
1 tablespoon water
3/4 cup cooked rice
3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
3/4 cup crumbled queso fresco (or shredded Monterey Jack cheese)
- Cut a lengthwise slit in each pepper. Place on foil-lined baking sheet. Bake at 425°F for 25 to 30 minutes, or until peppers blacken. Remove from oven.
- Wrap hot peppers in foil. Let stand for 10 minutes at room temperature.
- Using a spoon, remove seeds from insides of peppers. Gently pull skin off outsides of peppers in strips, leaving peppers in one piece. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, remove veggie burgers from package. Place on microwave-safe plate. Loosely cover and cook on medium-high (70% power) for 1½ to 2 minutes, or until partially thawed. Be sure to rearrange and turn over each veggie burger after 1 minute.
- In a large skillet, cook onions in hot oil over medium heat about 1 minute, or until translucent.
- Crumble veggie burgers into onion mixture. Cook, uncovered, for 3 to 4 minutes, or until heated through.
- Stir in beans and water. Reduce heat to low. Cook, uncovered, for 1 to 2 minutes.
- Stir in rice and cilantro. Remove from heat.
- Stuff peppers with burger mixture. Place in shallow baking pan, slit side up. Top with queso fresco. Bake at 350°F for 10 to 12 minutes, or until heated through and cheese has melted.
Organic Flavors of Mexico
Recipe and photo courtesy of Gardenburger
Read More:Chiles Rellenos
November 5th, 2009 - Barbara Feiner
If you enjoy food from a variety of cuisines, you’re no stranger to cilantro.
From Thai (Thai Roasted Squash Soup) and Indian (Indian Chickpea Dip, Madras Curry Dip for Fish/Seafood) cuisine to Mexican (Golden Guacamole, Harvest Stuffed Squash, Granny Smith Guacamole) and Middle Eastern (Middle Eastern Meatballs) dishes, this fragrant herb is a seasoning staple.
Also called Chinese or Mexican parsley, cilantro is the leafy part of the coriander plant. In folk and holistic medicine, it has been used to settle the stomach, relieve anxiety, lower cholesterol levels, help control diabetes, reduce inflammation and treat infections.
Modern medical research has confirmed the herb’s healing powers. In the August issue of Environmental Nutrition, registered dietitian Sharon Palmer cites cilantro’s antioxidant properties, which “may be due to their rich phytonutrients profile that scientists are beginning to identify.”
Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, also discovered that dodecenal—an antibacterial compound found in cilantro—can help kill Salmonella in foods. This finding led them to explore its use as a natural food additive. The researchers found cilantro to be a “potent antibiotic” and encouraged consumers to eat more fresh salsa. That said, they remind us that it’s no substitute for proper food handling.
Tune in tomorrow for our weekend recipe for Chiles Rellenos, which features a healthy dose of cilantro.
Holiday Gift Books
Read More:The Amazing Health Benefits of Cilantro