What a bounty of fresh herbs we got this week! I was so pleased to see SO MUCH cilantro, basil, and mint. So I decided to whip up a fresh herb salsa. There are so many different ways and flavour profiles to make with herb salsa, but I went very simple. A little acid, a little salt, and a little fat and you’ve got yourself a versatile and delicious condiment, dip, marinade, or spread.
I used the herb salsa in a potato salad – not your typical mayo dressing – and it provides so much flavour and freshness. If you don’t want to make a potato salad, you could use the herb salsa in a cold vermicelli noodle salad, as a drizzle over steamed beans, as a salad dressing, as a marinade, or as a dip for chips, bread, or pita. Let me know if you try it!
More Magnificent Meal Musings:
- Kale Salad with Grilled Peach and Feta
- Pupusas with Shaved Carrot and Cabbage Salad
- Carrot Dumplings (a recipe from this precise week last year!)
- Basil Pesto or Kale Pesto
Fresh Herb Salsa
This recipe uses a whole pile of fresh herbs (can be a variety of basil, cilantro, mint, dill, or parsley). It can be used in so many ways – on a cold noodle salad, as a marinade, on potato salad, cold cucumber salad, drizzled over steamed beans, or simply as a dip. I like making a batch of it and having it handy for when I want a pop of flavour and brightness in a dish.
- 2 cups variety of fresh herbs I used 2 sprigs mint, lots of cilantro, and a bit of basil
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 1/4 teaspoons red-wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons capers, rinsed and drained optional
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- salt, as needed
- pinch of chili flakes, or finely diced fresh chili, to taste optional
If you have a food processor, place herbs, garlic and vinegar in and pulse until finely chopped. If you don't have a food processor (I don't!) finely chop herbs and garlic on a cutting board. You can also use a mortar and pestle if you prefer, and add the vinegar in. If using capers, add these in as well.
Once finely chopped, transfer to a bowl and add in olive oil and chili (if using) and stir. Adjust seasoning with salt and extra vinegar if needed to taste.
This recipe uses a mixture of veg paired with potatoes to create a hearty side dish or light lunch. If you have a barbecue, then you can grill your veg instead of flash frying them. Getting a little bit of char brings out the sweetness and flavour of the veg, without ruining the texture. I mixed it up with the fresh herb salsa to give it a pop of flavour.
- 4 medium potatoes
- 1 zucchini, sliced into medallions
- 1-2 handfuls of green/yellow beans, trimmed, and cut into 1" pieces
- 2-3 green onions, green and white stalks cut into 1" pieces
- 1/4 cup fresh herb salsa
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta
- salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Boil potatoes in salted water until just tender. Allow to cool and cut into 1" cubes.
Heat a skillet over medium high heat. Add enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan. Test readiness of oil by flicking some water in – if it sizzles and pops, you're ready to go!
Cook veggies in batches. Start with the beans – toss them in the pan, and stir frequently, You want them to get a bit blistered with a nice golden char, but still maintain their crunchy texture. Mine were in the pan for about 3 – 5 minutes. Set aside. Repeat with zucchini, and then green onion. Cooking time for each will depend on the heat of your pan, but as with the beans, you want them to have nice dark/golden brown char.
Toss together potatoes, veg, feta, and herb salsa. Add salt and pepper to taste. This salad is delicious warm or cold.