Wild bergamot’s flavor is reminiscent of Greek oregano–spicy, earthy and pungent. In this sauce, I combined it with parsley, a little lemon juice and browned onion and garlic to make a delightful sauce to pair with veggies, meats or as a salad dressing. Sauteing the garlic and onion slightly will soften their heat and pungency, bringing out their warm, nutty and near sweet allium flavors.
In this recipe, I strip just the leaves from the bergamot stems and reserve the flowers for other use. The flower petals of the bergamot are edible and make for a beautiful garnish on salads or wherever you drizzle this sauce.
Whatever is left I use for iced herbal tea, steeping the bergamot flower heads with some spearmint and a spoonful of honey in boiled water for ~5 minutes, straining the herbs and then placing the tea in the fridge to cool.
- 1 cup parsley, leaves and stems
- 1/2 cup bergamot leaves, tightly packed
- 3 garlic cloves, minced or crushed
- 1/2 onion, chopped
- Juice of 1 small lemon
- 2-3 tablespoons oil, plus 1 tablespoon for sauteing
- 1-2 teaspoons salt
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- In a small pan, heat 1T oil over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until translucent. Add the garlic and cook–stirring frequently–until the onions and garlic start to turn golden brown.
- In a food processor, combine all the ingredients and blend until smooth.
- Salt and pepper to taste.
- If using for a salad dressing, you may wish to add a little more oil to reach a desired consistency.
- Serve immediately or reserve in the fridge.