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Also called fresh coriander or Chinese parsley, cilantro is well known for its refreshing lemony-ginger aroma with hints of sage. Cilantro has long been considered an acquired taste because if its penetrating odor and flavor. The bright green leaves are fan shaped with jagged edges. In addition to the leaves, the seed, known as coriander, is also used in cooking.

Culinary Uses
Best known for its addition to Mexican and Asian foods, cilantro has many applications across the epicurean spectrum. It is essential to Mexican salsas, Chinese dim sum, Indian curries and Thai cuisine. Mexicans combine cilantro, garlic, chilies and lime juice to create a marinade for fish, chicken and vegetables. It also pairs well with avocado, coconut milk, corn, cucumbers, seafood, legumes, lemons, and rice. Try using cilantro with the following herbs and spices: garlic, basil, chili, chives, dill, ginger, lemon grass, mint and parsley. Like basil, cilantro also turns black when cooked in an acid medium such as tomato sauce. It is used whole, shredded, chopped or minced in cooking. Cilantro bruises easy so handle with care. Because cilantro’s leaves are so delicate it does not dry well and is best used fresh.

Other Uses
Cilantro is used in potpourri for its strong scent. Some believe cilantro and its seed coriander made into a tonic will help digestion. Cilantro is also a good source of Vitamin A.

Wrapped loosely in plastic, cilantro will keep in the refrigerator for one week as long as the leaves are not wet. Rinse cilantro well before using as it may have soil or grit clinging to its leaves and steams.
Fla Dept of Agriculture




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