recipes that are simple and delicious.
Are you like me when it comes to pesto? You love it right? I think pesto goes great with so many things, whether you are simply dipping vegetables into it, lathering it on a sandwich, or going with a classic and tossing it with pasta, pesto is really bright and delicious. I’ve made everything from your classic pesto, to a pea pesto to be used on pizza, and lately a carrot top pesto. All were very delicious, and extremely easy to make.
Recently I had an abundance of cilantro, and an idea sparked to use the cilantro and make a pesto out of it. Why not, right? After all, pesto is typically herbs, nuts, and cheeses crushed together to make a sauce, so why not try it with cilantro. At first, I had no idea what I was going to make to accompany the cilantro pesto, and as I quickly thought of pasta, or mixing it into some rice, I decided to lather it onto some shrimp skewers that I had grilling. They were a total hit, and everyone of them consumed.
Let’s get started.
Toss the cilantro, almonds, cheese, garlic, water, and salt into a food processor. Pulse until things become rather smooth. Start adding the olive oil, using a nice drizzle, until things become really nice and smooth. Scrape out the pesto into a small serving bowl. Taste, and season with any salt, if you desire.
Next, take the shrimp, and run the skewer through them. You can probably get 5-6 shrimp on each skewer. I like the 21-25 shrimp, raw, from the store. They are a good size, and hold up well, texturally.
Heat your grill. Again, I am a fan of charcoal, but you do what you need to do. Gas or coal, your call.
Once your coals are heated, and the grates are super clean, add the shrimp skewers, over indirect heat if you can. Cook for a few minutes, then flip. Brush on a nice amount of the cilantro pesto. Cover, or close the lid, and let cook another couple of minutes. DO NOT OVERCOOK THE SHRIMP. Who likes overcooked shrimp anyway?
Remove the skewers from the grill, and place the skewers onto a serving dish. I find that people tend to like removing items from a skewer, or going full force and eating directly off of the skewers (that would be me). Brush more of the fresh cilantro pesto onto the skewers. The heat from the cooked shrimp with pair nicely with the fresh pesto.
Dig in. There is a great freshness to this cilantro pesto. Sure, you get a bit of garlic, and a bit of saltiness from the cheese, but when when grilled with the shrimp, well, it takes you over the top.
My daughter, who doesn’t even like shrimp, devoured a handful of these great grilled shrimp with cilantro pesto, and that always scores in my book. That should say something, at least it did for me. I hope you enjoy.