Tribute to Cilantro


Cilantro: The “Offensive” Herb

Cilantro. What a controversial herb! Did you know that there’s actually a website called Their homepage states:

“Welcome! You are visiting the web site of a growing community of cilantro haters. We are, however, rational people. In fact, we are the most rational people on earth. No normally functioning human being would ever in a lifetime consider cilantro edible.”

How comical!  People either love it or hate it, with seemingly the majority turning their nose up at it.  Ina Garten says it tastes like “dish soap” and Julia Child once said, “I’d pick it out if I saw it and throw it on the floor.”

Honestly, I used to be among those stricken with cilantrophobia; years ago, I could never identify the exact flavor that I didn’t like in my favorite Mexican restaurant’s salsa. After discovering it to be the “offensive” herb, I avoided it like I avoid my students returning to school post-stomach flu. I’ve often heard its flavor referred to as “soapy.”

However, somehow over the past few years, I’ve grown to adore those distinctly-flavored leaves. I think it actually happened sort of drastically. One day, I must’ve just decided, “Hey, it’s not so bad…” And the rest is history. It’s a flavor that is truly unique in the epicurean world. This week, I’ve made cilantro-lime rice twice. When I make fresh salsa, I use copius amounts. It gets [heavily] sprinkled into my quinoa salad amongst crisp peppers, creamy black beans, and spicy scallions. It’s now in our grocery cart at least three times a month, and I’ve been Pinteresting advice on growing it here at home.  We’ve made amends!

That poor, badmouthed cilantro? We’re now very close.

Any other cilantro lovers out there?

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