Recaito is a seasoning base for beans, rice, soups and stews. By itself it has a very strong flavor, but added to dishes, it provides a flavorful base. I recently made recaito from scratch at a cooking class I was teaching. One of the attendants wanted to eat it with chips. He soon found out, that it was a lot stronger than he thought. Funny lesson!!!
In this recipe I use cilantro since it is readily available. In Latin America and the Caribbean an herb called recao is commonly used. Recao is a deep green tapered leaf with serrated edges about the size of the middle finger(sorry!). It’s flavor is intense, more so than that of cilantro.
Here are the base ingredients of recaito, just add some olive oil to blend.
Recaito Recipe: Cilantro Base
- Wash cilantro thoroughly.
- Cut the lower stems of the cilantro and discard.
- With a pair of kitchen shears cut the cilantro bunch into 3 parts and place in a food processor. Add the remaining ingredients, and push the on button.
- Let it run for about 3 minutes, stopping every 30 seconds to stir the ingredients around.
- The final texture should appear chunky.
- When finished, recaito should be stored in the freezer. The best way to store is in a covered ice cube tray. If you don't have one, use a regular ice cube tray.
- When the cubes are frozen, remove and place in a covered container.
- Recaito will keep in your freezer for about 3 months.
You should be able to get close to 12 cubes of recaito from this recipe. Note the nutrition information is based on a 2 Tbsp cube.