Experiments in Cooking

Low-waste chimichurri with roasted veggies

I offered to bring a veggie side for a party, and then got completely stumped trying to fridge-dive and avoid a grocery run. Finally I settled on roasted veggies with a fun dip/sauce. I chopped up one head of cauliflower, half a head of broccoli, and two carrots – one white, one purple. I dusted them with a generous sprinkling of spices, tossed with oil, and set them aside to roast. Then I eyed the sad little stumps of the cauli and broc, and decided I had to use them. Who wants to waste edible parts? I chopped them up, microwaved them, and pureed them.

These veggies got sent to the oven. 

These stumpy bits got microwaved

Diced cauli & broc stumps.

Next, I grabbed a bunch of cilantro, added it to the blender along with salt, chilli flakes, garlic, red wine vinegar and olive oil.

Cilantro, cauli & broc puree

Meanwhile I had already chopped two green onions, and soaked them in just enough red wine vin to cover them, along with red chilli flakes & generous salt.

I mixed the green puree with the soaked green onions, added some more olive oil, and ta-da! Low waste chimichurri!

Recipe for brassica chimichurri:


  • Stalks from one head of cauliflower and half head of broccoli. I like that these brassica stalks add an extra dimension to an otherwise cilantro-only sauce. I would consider adding in a small portion of other greens if I wasn’t trying to use up unwanted stalks.
  • 50 g bunch cilantro, rinsed and just the very bottoms trimmed out. Chop coarsely.
  • 2 green onions (real chimi recipes call for garlic greens. However, I was avoiding a trip to the grocery store at all costs, and had to sub them out)
  • 2 small pearls of garlic (to compensate for above substitution)
  • 1 tsp red chilli flakes (or, to taste)
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • salt to taste


  1. Finely chop the green onions (or garlic greens). Put them in a small ramekin and add 2-3 tbsp red wine vinegar, enough to just cover them. Add 1/2 tsp of salt, 1/3 of the chilli flakes, mix, and allow to soak for 10 minutes.
  2. Steam the diced veggie stalks
  3. Place steams stalks & chopped cilantro in a blender. Add 1/4 cup red wine vinegar and 1/8 cup olive oil. Blend.
  4. Salt the puree to taste (on the low side, since the green stalks are salted to).
  5. Add  1/3 of the chilli pepper flakes to blender.
  6. Add another 1/8 cup red wine vinegar & pulse. Use any left over vinegar to adjust to your preferred consistency.
  7. To serve: Pour the puree into a bowl. Add remaining 1/8 cup of olive oil. Top with the soaked green onions. Swirl gently, not mixing completely. Sprinkle with remaining 1/3 tsp of red chilli flakes.

PS: I’m eventually going to retag this so it isn’t under the American food category, but we have to live with it for now 🙂