Cilantro Pesto Rice Recipe | PBS Food

A fresh and flavorful way to prepare rice as a side to fresh fish.


Yield: 6 servings



  • 4 cups water
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 cups steamed jasmine rice
  • Salt to taste
  • White pepper to taste


  1. Bring the water to a boil in a saucepan and blanch the cilantro for thirty seconds. Remove and dunk the cilantro in a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. Remove and squeeze out the excess water. Next, toast the pine nuts in a skillet over medium heat.
  2. Put cilantro, pine nuts, garlic clove, olive oil in a food processor or blender and pulse or blend into a course paste consistency. You don't want it too fine, you want some texture.
  3. At this point you are going to mix pesto into the steamed jasmine rice until it is thorougly combined. Season to taste with salt and white pepper.


Serving Suggestions: Great with any fish. At the Forbes Island we serve it with pan-seared wild salmon and ginger lemongrass cream sauce. Beverage Suggestions: A crisp and citrusy Sauvignon Blanc or a jammy Syrah.
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