Coriander and cashew dip recipe

Posted on August 9, 2013


Just a quick and easy recipe for as we’re approaching the weekend (yay!). This dip/condiment is great to have around the house. You can call this a ‘coriander pesto’, but it feels a bit incorrect since pesto specifically refers to a basil based blend. It’s like calling a pear and chocolate cake a ‘pear jaffa cake’; you wouldn’t, would you? And while we’re on the topic of illogical naming conventions, one of my pet hates is the annoying habit of calling any type of bar snacks or sharing of small foods “[insert nationality here] tapas” in Australia. Tapas is a Spanish word referring to a course of snacks/appetisers in Spanish cuisine. I get that many nationalities have their own snacking culture that is similar to tapas; what I don’t get is why they insist on using a Spanish word to define their own snacks! The one that absolutely peeves me off to no end is “Chinese tapas” when they are actually referring to dim sum. Just call it dim sum! Or “Chinese snacks/small eats” for the matter! Yup, this is the kind of stuff that keeps me up at night. Please let me know I’m not the only one incensed with this phenomenon.

And now that I’ve sufficiently diverted you from the topic, let’s get back on track with this coriander cashew dip!


I first became acquainted with coriander dip after sampling Georgia’s mum’s version of this a while ago. The recipe below omits the use of garlic which takes it even further away from a pesto, but if you wanted, you can add in 1-2 cloves of minced garlic. I decided not to use garlic because I like the freshness of the coriander and also felt that the garlic would be a touch overpowering. If you wanted to make regular pesto; same ratios apply, just substitute basil for coriander and pine nuts for cashew, and don’t forget the garlic. As for why I chose to make a coriander cashew version of pesto…because my dear parents strikes again, giving me more coriander and cashew than I could hope to eat!


Unlike other recipes, I don’t just use the coriander leaves, how wasteful! Not to mention time consuming to pick off all the leaves. Just use the whole thing, stems and all. It’s all edible. Coriander is also one of the few plants that has a consistent flavour throughout. The leaves, stem and root all have the same flavour; it’s just more concentrated as you go down the chain. So embrace your laziness and throw the whole plant in the mix!

RECIPE – Coriander and cashew dip



  • 1 1/2 bunches of coriander washed (about 2 cups loosely packed)
  • 1/3 cup roasted unsalted cashews
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan
  • up to 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • ~1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a food processor, blitz the coriander, cashews and Parmesan until finely chopped and well mixed.
  2. With the motor off, stir in up to 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil (enough to form a wet paste). Mix in lemon juice and season to taste.
  3. Store in an airtight container. Use as a dip, or pasta sauce.


I’m not really sure how long this will last in the fridge because one batch usually disappears before a week is up at my place, so just trust your nose. This dip is particularly good to have around when you’re too lazy to make dinner – just cook some spaghetti and mix in a generous amount. As quick as 2 minute noodles (if using fresh pasta), but so much better for you!