Aji Verde Sauce
Updated: Apr 13
Home cook feature - Dillon Delacroix
Photo taken by: Theo Macabeo
Words from D.Zimm
Dillon and I exchanged words on IG for a bit until we finally got together. She skateboards and cooks, which was all I really needed to hear. I value Dillon's energy every time we kick it. She showed me you can skate from Manhattan Beach to Redondo and be rewarded with sake, fresh steamed crab, smoked fish and any other seafood your palette drools over. This was something she grew up doing with her family, so tmore special that she shared this moment with me. Thanks for that DD. And thanks for supporting Herb & Olive.ationship is strong, and I'm thankful she hits me up every time she's back in LA for obligatory sushi and drinks. Steph is one of those people that I'm comfortable fully opening up to, so we talk about life, family, relationships, work... everything. She told me I should link up with Dillon, because she lived in the area and thought we would vibe well together.
I was hesitant at first, because I have plenty of close friends, and have a hard enough time keeping up everyone. Especially with Herb & Olive, doing contract work and making music. You know how it is. It's hard to make time for everything, especially when you are building a foundation for yourself and the universe around you. Tangent aside. I took Steph's word, because she's a day one (and I'm happy I did).
Dillon and I exchanged words on IG for a bit until we finally got together. She skateboards and cooks, which was all I really needed to hear. I value Dillon's energy every time we kick it. She showed me you can skate from Manhattan Beach to Redondo and be rewarded with sake, fresh steamed crab, smoked fish and any other seafood your palette drools over. This was something she grew up doing with her family, so it's extra special that she shared this moment with me. Thanks for that DD. And thanks for supporting Herb & Olive.
Photo taken by: Dillion Delacroix
CBD Quantity (per serving): 5-10mg
Servings: 4-6 dishes
Allergies: Spicy food (if you can't handle spicy food, don't make this one)
Prep Time: 20-30 min
Cook Time: n/a
Author Note: The recipe below is to make the sauce, but we'll leave it to you for the pairing. Chicken, mariscos, rice, steak, sandwich, whatever's clever. Send us your photos, we'd love to see how you mix this up.
Some background (words by DD)
There's a popular LA institution that goes by Mario's, that's on the corner of Melrose and Vine. Mario's is a no frills Peruvian hole-in-the-wall restaurant that has stood the test of time. They are known for their famous Lomo Saltado dish (of which I get their mariscos one), Peruvian ceviche, Papa a la Huancaina, and so much more. The most distinctive for me is their addicting Aji verde sauce. I once stole a bottle when I was a young hooligan (not proud of that moment, and never did it again). I did however, vow to recreate their dish, and get the sauce to the same thickness and spicy consistency. Not all Aji verdes are created equal. Most run pretty watery like a typical salsa. You can pair this sauce with almost anything that is savory, to something simple as a warm, soft dinner roll- which is how they serve you at Mario's tables upon seating. This sauce definitely isn't for the faint of heart when it comes to spice. If you can't handle the heat, stay out of the kitchen on this one.
1 whole lime, juiced
1 bunch chopped romaine lettuce
2 tablespoons Herb & Olive CBD EVOO
1/2 cup good-quality mayonnaise (I used Veganaise for a healthier alternative)
2 tablespoons queso fresco or parmesan
2 serrano peppers, ends trimmed
1 bunch cilantro, with the leaves removed and stems discarded
4 garlic cloves, peeled
2 green onions, ends trimmed and roughly chopped
2 teaspoons huacatay paste, (if available to you)
1 tablespoon aji amarillo paste, (if available to you)
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Step 1: Set the vibe and drink some wine
Here's a playlist curated by DD. She recommends a nice dry riesling with this recipe.
Step 2: Prepare and chop ingredients
Prepare and chop all ingredients into chunks as per the ingredient list above.
Step 3: Blend ingredients
To a blender, add chopped romaine lettuce, lime juice, Herb & Olive CBD EVOO, cheese, mayonnaise, serrano peppers, cilantro leaves, garlic cloves, green onions, huacatay paste, aji amarillo and salt. Blend for about 1 to 2 minutes, until very smooth.
Chef note: At first the cilantro leaves won't be totally smooth, but keep the blender running and it will eventually become consistent. Give it a taste and adjust the salt according to your liking. The sauce will keep in the fridge for up to a week. Do not freeze.
DD's version of the mariscos with aji verde // Photo taken by: Dillion Delacroix