Cilantro is the green leaves and stems of the herb, Coriandrum sativum, an annual herb of the parsley family. Also known as Chinese parsley, cilantro has a distinctive green, waxy flavor. Cilantro is the usual name for the leaf of the plant that is otherwise identified as coriander, and from which coriander seed is obtained.
Used in salsas, chutneys, salads, dips, beans and soups, cilantro is found in Asian, Mexican, Indian, Tex-Mex, Caribbean, and North African cuisines. Cilantro is used in seasoning blends and sauces such as masala, curry, salsa and recados.
Cilantro is believed to have been one of the earliest plantings in North America, where the cilantro leaves, rather than the seed, became more popular. Today, it is cultivated in the Mediterranean region of Southern Europe, in Mexico and in the U.S.
Cilantro is mentioned in the Medical Papyrus of Thebes written in 1552 B.C. and is one of the plants which grew in the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. 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 was planted in 1670 in Massachusetts, and it soon appeared in Latin America.
Light to medium, fresh green
Flavor & Aroma
Waxy, citrus, soapy
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.