Cilantro: The Medicinal Culinary Herb
Did you know that the common herb that you find in your grocery store called cilantro, is actually just the adopted Spanish name for the coriander plant? Coriander (Coriandrum sativum) is an annual herb in the Apiaceae family, and this plant has a somewhat confusing name breakdown, so let me clarify it for you. Properly, the entire plant and seeds are named coriander. The leaves can be called various names, depending on where you live. In the United States and Canada, they would be referred to as cilantro, but elsewhere you will see the leaves labeled as Chinese parsley, or simply coriander. More colloquially, and how I was taught, was that the entire plant is called cilantro, and just the seeds themselves are called coriander. Cilantro is widely used in Mexican cuisine, which has led to the cultural preference of using the Spanish word for this herb here in North America.