Cilantro (aka Coriander)

The Curious Cook – Why Cilantro Tastes Like Soap, for Some.” The really interesting bit for me is towards the end, where they talk about the way brains rewire themselves based on positive associations. I used to HATE cilantro when I lived in the U.S. I have a vivid memory of being in a Mexican restaurant and being served what was probably a very nice fresh salsa, but recoiling because of the “soapiness” of the cilantro therein. But here I am 15 years later and I CAN’T GET ENOUGH OF IT. I am coriander crazy. I really do think that, for me, the change in association came via the Snook’s Thai green curry. It’s such a tasty dish, and I just love when he cooks it for me. It gives me such happy feelings. And I think that’s where the change came.

Just to clarify, in the U.S. people call the seeds coriander and the leaves cilantro. In most other countries, the whole thing is coriander.


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  1. i never understood the soap thing. Never tasted that way for me. Interesting to learn it’s relatively common! I love the stuff too.

  2. crazy crafty psychic sisters… it’s not so much the soapy taste that gets me as the BUTT taste. (j/k.) i am way more desensitized to it than i used to be (unavoidable in most good mex food) but i can’t imagine ever swinging to the point of *preferring* it. {shudder}

  3. Hahaha, some awesome related links:

    Why you hate cilantro: “So, really, it’s not that you’re an unrefined hick, it’s more that your genes are lacking in culture. The article suggests several options by which you can allow yourself to appreciate the subtle majesty of cilantro, but it seems like a lot of work and we know you’d be much happier sticking to regular parsley, right? I wouldn’t trouble yourself too much about it, you boorish culinary xenophobe.”

    And also, my new favorite tumblelog.

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