The New York Times tackles the cilantro divide, and why it inflames passions on either side. As a certified cilantro hater, comparing the flavor to soap doesn’t quite cover how it tastes to me. More like engine degreaser. But restaurants love garnishing food with handfuls of the stuff, even though, as it turns out, many of us from entirely European ancestry have a genetic aversion to the taste.
The Oxford Companion to Food notes that the word “coriander” (cilantro’s alias for when it’s trying to sneak out of the country on another passport) comes from the Greek word for “bedbug” based on how its smell reminded them of bedbug-infested clothing. I have no idea what that might smell like, but it sounds totally delicious.
Bottom line, if you’re cooking for other people or if you own a restaurant, please, for the love of Morrissey, make the cilantro garnish optional or leave it out. It’s fine and necessary as a spice used sparingly in Indian food. But picking out individual leaves of unwanted garnish isn’t my idea of a good meal. My brain registers it as poison, and now I have the New York Times to back me up. Put that in your pipe and smoke it.
Anyway, let’s take a poll. Where are you on the cilantro divide? Love it, hate it, or don’t understand what people like me are on about?
[Pic from I Hate Cilantro]
∞ posted at 08:02 by stevesimitzis