Cilantro

Coriander (Coriandrum sativum)

 

THE FLAVOR

The flavor and aroma of Cilantro is generally described as being waxy, citrus and soapy in nature.  The flavor of the leaf is distinctive, and quite different from that of the Coriander seed.

THE LOCATION 

Coriander is native to southwestern Asia west to north  Africa. It is a soft, hairless, foetid plant growing to 50 cm [20 in.] tall .  

Cultivators grow coriander, an herb related to carrots, anise, parsely, and dill, primarily for its aromatic leaves and seeds. The leaves, used as a spice known as cilantro, are a common ingredient in Latin American and Asian cooking. The seeds contain an oil that is extracted and used in the preparation of some liqueurs


THE CUISINE

Before it is used, Cilantro should be crushed, either by hand or with a mortar and pestle. Cilantro is a perfect addition to Mexican dishes; add Cilantro to salsas and bean dips. Mix crushed Cilantro into sour cream and use it as a topping for chili, tacos, or enchiladas.Ancient Hebrews added Cilantro to an herb mixture used in the ritual of Passover. Greek and Roman physicians hailed its medicinal powers. The Coriandum sativum herb is believed to have been one of the earliest plantings in North America - dating back to 1670 in Massachusetts - and it soon appeared in Latin America where the Cilantro leaves, rather than the seed, became most popular.