Food

Bonus Sunday cooking adventures: Spicy spinach and cashew sauce

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Earlier this week I posted an article from NPR about sauces made from nuts. Today I tried the spicy spinach and cashew sauce. It had a good flavor and my plan is to use it on vegetables (raw and cooked) and maybe try it on pasta too.

I’m not big on creamy sauces, so these nut sauces really appealed to me. They sneak in protein-filled nuts, green vegetables, and they don’t use mayonnaise as the base. (I HATE mayonnaise.) Let me know if you try any of them. Here is a link to the original recipes. There are many to choose from.

Spicy Spinach And Cashew Sauce
Claire Adas for NPR
Makes about 2 1/2 cups

Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small shallot, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
About 5 ounces spinach (about 2 cups)
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon coriander
Pinch of nutmeg
Red pepper flakes, to taste
Pinch of ground ginger
1/2 cup roasted cashews (no salt added)
Squeeze of lime
Pepper and salt (optional)

Method:
1) Warm the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the shallot. Cook for a minute or two, add the garlic, cook for under a minute until it starts to brown. Add the spinach, a few tablespoons of water and herbs and spices. Cook until the spinach is wilted and the pan is quite dry.

2) Meanwhile, put the cashews in a blender or food processor. Add about 1/2 cup water, and blend until you have a thick paste.

3) Add the spinach mixture to the blender, and blend it all together. Add a splash of water to the empty pan, and stir it around so you have all the nice spicy bits. Pour this water into the blender. Blend until you have a nice smooth sauce. Return it to the pan and heat to warm through, if you like, or serve at room temperature. You can leave this thick like a pesto, or add water to make it a thinner sauce. Season with pepper and a squeeze of lime. (I omitted the salt.)



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