Archive for February 7, 2008
Recently I noticed I began to use cilantro at unprecedented levels in my cooking and had decided to look cilantro up on the web, even though I only recently started to cook and use it in my cooking and garden four years ago but never to the extent of my recent usage amounts. I wasn’t going to search as to why I had been craving this herb, but what were its supposed effects, if any on our bodies. I was shocked to learn how great cilantro actually is for us and to our overall health.
It was only until now that I was curious what the herb was all about. And why the heck was I started to naturally crave this herb? I had to get to the bottom of this but promptly! I knew I had used it plenty of times in my Oh So Famous Salsa. But I needed to know what did cilantro do, if anything to us and our bodies. With the research I found, this article was created and I just had to share.
Who knew That Cilantro Was This Good!?!
Want a cure all for viral and bacterial infections and more? Well read on…albeit maybe novel, the ability to use cilantro greatly increases our ability to clear up recurring infections, both viral and bacterial especially when eaten with omega-3 enriched foods such as nuts. But there are many other wonderful side effects of eating Cilantro. Who knew?
Although we all like to use fresh herbs if we can get them, it seems that there are more benefits than first thought, especially when us foodies started to first go all hog-wild on the “got-to-be-fresh-happy” with the use of non-dried herbs in our cooking. So many of us grew up with dried herbs, and for many more, dried herbs that would stay in our cupboards for years. I know I am not alone here. That by the time we reached (some sort of ) adulthood, we wished to cook no more “out-of-the-box”, but back to the real deal, thankfully to food network stations everywhere telling us the importance of a dishes success depends on the use of the freshest of herbs.
This trend in “using fresh herbs as a must” is so true that McCormick, this past fall, placed out one page magazine advertisements in several magazines and even created a website to assist visitors in checking out just how old their herbs were in their cupboards. If you think I am kidding, go one and take the McCormick Herb Test as seen on their spicecheckcallange.com site – yes they created one just for this purpose! But do note anything from the McCormick’s Baltimore factory is over 15 years old! Yuck! I had four or five in my cabinets that were promptly tossed. Yeah I know, who knew!
Using Cilantro In Your Cooking
Cilantro has a mild peppery taste, flat leaves and is similar looking to flat-leafed parsley. It is a family member of the carrot family – and as you can tell from its looks, the tops of this wonderful herb resemble that of a carrot top.
Cilantro is great as an edible garnish. If you mince it and sprinkle any dish you have before you, literally, including your breakfast eggs, you will receive its curing and healing attributes of the cilantro herb.
But I have recently resurrected its’ importance in being a main point in my daily diet. After a little research, I learned that cilantro seems to have some very interesting (and affordable) super health benefits and can be seen as a major cleaner of the body in ridding heavy metals such as mercury, lead and aluminum from one’s body.
Yes, there’s more people, cilantro is also a blood cleaner. And heck why not eat what you love and detox your body simultaneously?
I was researching the health benefits of cilantro and scallions when I came across this amazing article that reveals the resources of its studies along with the amazing beneficial healthy results. If you are interested in seeing the article in full, click here. The article in posted on the rawfoodinfo.com website. I definitely recommend it.
It seems that for years there have been drugs available to help rid the body of the heavy metals called, “Chelation therapy” [which] using chemical agents like EDTA has long been used to help remove heavy metals” but it seems as if cilantro is one of the affordable natural substances than can remove these metals naturally.
So what do you do to get this herb to assist in your healing?
Best eaten raw, but you knew that already! Some suggestions include using cilantro pesto (recipe below) over pasta, spread onto toasted Italian bread, a dollop over your cooked meat, etc. you get the idea here people! You can also add this peppery herb to cooking, from any and all rice dishes, and pastas to meat dishes.
This herb is also very affordable in fresh bunches at your grocery store. My local store has them at $1.00 for (2) two nice-sized bunches. A small handful (2 teaspoons minced) used in your salads every day for two to three weeks which is the recommended amount to have its curing properties work on your issues it seems, will have you feeling better than you have been in a long while.
Do wash your cilantro very well though. The best way is to fill a large bowl with cold water, and gently put the tops in tops down into the bowl. Stirring the end of the bunch of cilantro, swishing it around will help loosed any soil that may be on it. You can then shake dry and place it in a bad, much the same you would do wish washed lettuce.
Want To Grow Cilantro?
Cilantro is super easy to grow from seed, – which is the coriander seed – hey who knew?!? But be sure to cut your plant often like parsley, for constant fresh growth. Likes sun, and the cilantro is a simple herb that also helps to keep the bugs away. Another natural remedy! A great plant for kids to try as one of their first herbs due to its quick growing in the garden and low-maintenance gardening requirements. Cilantro also does fairly well in a extra sunny kitchen window.
A friend of mine has a great cilantro “pesto” though his is very hot, there are many variations I see on the web. The main point it that you will increase your ability to heal yourself from viral and bacterial infections – especially re-occurring ones with adding 2-3 teaspoons of fresh cilantro with your diet every day for two to three weeks.
I have started this trend of uping my cilantro amounts now for a week, and my head seems clear and my body feels great. Now I know why from this research. I will let you all know how fantastic I feel in two weeks on this.
Here’s one recipe for Cilantro Pesto.
1 clove garlic
1 cup almonds, cashews, or other nuts
1 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons lemon juice
6 tablespoons olive oil
Put the cilantro and olive oil in blender and process until the cilantro is chopped. Add the rest of the ingredients and process to a lumpy paste. (You may need to add a touch of hot water and scrape the sides of the blender.) You can change the consistency by altering the amount of olive oil and lemon juice, but keep the 3:1 ratio of oil to juice. (It freezes well, so you can make several batches at once.)
Personal Cilantro Recipes I have created and use:
Hot Cilantro Pesto
- 2 bunches fresh cilantro
- 1 head of garlic – yes a complete head
- 1 cup fresh lemon juice (6-8 lemons)
- Cardomon – freshly ground
- 2 or more Hot peppers, dried scotch bonnets or green chilies
- 1/4-1/2 cup olive oil
- salt to taste
- Place all ingredients into your food processor and ground till it becomes a pulp consistency.
- Use if you dare as a condiment to anything – it really makes a plain dish pop with glee.
Cilantro Salad Dressing
- 8 oz ranch dressing
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 bunch of cilantro, chopped
- 1 tbl rice vinegar
- 1/4 cup grated cheese, Parmesan or combination of cheddar & jack
- 1 jalapeño, no seeds
- Place all ingredients in a food processor or blender
- Blend until smooth
Cilantro Cold Slaw
- For the salad:
- 2 large granny smith apples, julienned
- 1 large red bell pepper, stem, seeds and membrane
- removed and julienned
- 1 large green bell pepper, stem, seeds and membrane
- removed and julienned
- 1 large yellow bell pepper, stem seeds and membrane
- removed and julienned
- 1 small head of green cabbage, julienned thin
- 1 small head of red cabbage, julienned thin
- 4 yellow fresh corn tortillas julienned thin and fried
- 4 red fresh corn tortillas julienned thin and fried
- 1 bunch cilantro leaves, whole
- For the dressing:
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 bunch of cilantro, chopped fine
- Juice of 3 limes
- Salt to taste
- Combine all ingredients except tortillas into a bowl and mix well.
- Add dressing and tortillas and mix lightly being careful not to break
- up the tortillas too small.
Kick in the Pants Soup
- 14 oz. can chicken broth (I prefer organic, non-fat, low or no sodium)
- 1 large tomato, seeded and diced
- 4 oz. can chopped mild green chiles (do not drain)
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro
- 1 to 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
- 1/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 3/4 tsp ground cumin
- tortilla chips (optional)
- In a medium saucepan, bring broth to a boil over high heat.
- Stir in tomato and green chiles.
- Return to boil.
- Remove from the heat.
- Stir in remaining ingredients.
- Let stand, covered, for 5 minutes to allow the flavors to blend.
- Add tortilla chips to taste. (optional)
There are many more interesting and delightful recipes out there on the web, these are just a few of course. Do get out there and check them out to try today!
Happy Healing Healthily in a Hurry!
As a side silly note though, there is one spice tin I keep simply for its name, shape of its tin and for the nostalgic purpose in reminding me of my mother’s kitchen cabinets which had more spices than any neighbor and was more organized than any kitchen cabinet I knew of then. And yes, she was a great cook and known outside the family for her parties full of fantastic homemade food. And for these reasons why I probably write so much on food besides cooking up a storm any chance I get. But I am loving my cilantro but hard, an herb she never got to learn to try. I will make sure my friends and family do not have the same experience but instead learn and more importantly add this oh-so affordable herb to their everyday diet for better health!