Thai Pepper-Coriander Paste
It will keep well in a glass jar in the refrigerator providing a clean dry spoon is used each time.
2 bunches fresh coriander
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
1 tablespoon salt
3 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
4 tablespoons lemon juice
Wash coriander in several changes of cold water, swishing it around until all the soil has been dislodged. Scrub the roots well with a small brush and shake off as much moisture as possible, then pat dry in a tea towel. Chop coarsely and measure 2 cups firmly packed coriander, including the roots. Finely chop the measured coriander, or pound with a mortar and pestle. Crush garlic with salt to a smooth paste. Roast the peppercorns in a dry pan for 1-2 minutes, then coarsely crush using a mortar and pestle. Mix all the ingredients together. Another method is to use an electric blender, but in this case reduce peppercorns by half, as they deliver more heat when finely ground. Store the paste in an airtight glass jar in the refrigerator.
Recipe excerpted from Encyclopedia of Asian Food by Charmaine Solomon (Periplus Editions, 1998)