|Supporting the Fight Against Cilantro!|
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Visitors contribute their cilantro stories...
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"The same restaurants that served "staple" dishes for years in the DC area have chosen to put cilantro in these menu items.
If it's not broke don't fix it!!!
Most recently, the occidental grill served me an avocado and crab meat salad with cilantro. I have been enjoying that menu item for years without the vile weed and the waiter even commented how often it is now sent back because of the addition of cilantro.
I personaly think cilantro should ALWAYS be listed as an ingredient as it is a foul, objectionable, vile, overpowering ingredient to any food dish.
Another local establishment has ruined their entire menu with cilantro. Most long time residents of DC remember the original Rio Grande restaurant in Behtesda, Md. It is now being franchised and every dish comes with a dose of cilantro.
No one I know like cilantro so who is eating this crap?
I have a simple explanation. Stupid, spineless diners eat this stuff because they have no palate and they lack the backbone to admit they hate something that is fashionable.
Restaurants make a fortune selling water (now that it's bottled and they charge) and beer to wash down this cilantro laced food.
I would rather chew double mint gum throughout dinner than eat cilantro.
- Mac Lakeridge, VA
"I grew up in Italy, a cilantro free country (trust me, I spent 33 years there, and I never had to eat it, I didn't even know that such thing could exist).
Then I moved to USA, and I was soon invited to try the Mexican/Californian burrito. It actually looked to me like a very interesting thing to eat, but eventually, after I tested something like dish soap in it, I leave it there.
the second episode was at a Thai restaurant, I've got a soup that time. Well, I tested the same disgusting thing.
"Something wrong", I asked my american wife, "there is something here that taste very bad, exactly like that burrito".
"mmmh...", my wife said, "maybe is the cilantro!".
"the ci what?"
"that green thing, see?"
"but, isn't it parsley?"
"not really, try to taste a piece..."
Than I realize. Unfortunately I like those restaurant, so I always have to make sure there won't be cilantro in my food, which sometime it doesn't work.
Not long time ago I was in a Cinese restaurant and I forgot to ask my usual question to the waiter. So he came back with my meal, with a lot of fresh cilantro on top. The waiter was rushing, and almost start to mix the whole thing.
"noooooooooooo!", I sayed, "I don't really like this green thing, so I would like to remove it first"
"no problem", he said.
He removed it to quikly, some small pieces were still there, but he started to mix it anyway.
"noooooooooooo!", I interrupted him again, "I'll take care of it, thank you".
That waiter looked really surprised, I guess he could't believe that I hate that thing so much!
- Mazapegul Berkeley, CA
"My father will not chop cilantro while I am in the downstairs of the house - the odor is just too strong for me. I guess it proves he loves me."
- LF Wade Portland, OR
"The first time I experienced cilantro was at a Mexican restaurant (I believe "Uncle Julio's") about 15 years ago. I was there with a party of about 10 people, family and friends.
We were trying the salsa as we waited to order, and we all thought it tasted absolutely awful. It was clear to us that the bowl that the salsa was placed in hadn't been washed properly, because the salsa tasted like dish soap. So we told the waiter and he brought another one.
A minute later we're waiving the waiter down again.
After a third bowl and the waiter going to the kitchen to check on the salsa, the waiter is certain that the salsa is not tainted with dish soap. The waiter eventually asks "are you sure you're not tasting the cilantro?" Confused, we're all wondering what cilantro is exactly, and hunt for the little green leaves in the salsa that the waiter points out.
In the end we're all left speechless, stunned as to why someone would willingly eat such a thing. The waiter sheepishly said something like "yea some people say that.""
- , TX
"I feel I was tricked into trying cilantro, as I was just getting into gardening, and deciding which herbs to plant... at the same time had been reading my recipe books which seemed to contain an ungodly amount of recipes containing IT. Anyway, into the herb box it went, amongst my beloved Italian Parsley, thyme, etc... It was growing well, so I thought I'd just pick a little and have a munch on it - just like I'd do with my parsley. OH. MY. GOD. The rest is history... to say I needed an anti-emetic is an understatement... I'm so glad I found this site to share the horror that IS Cilantro! "
- Margherita Auckland
"I learned to despise cilantro at a young age. My family lived overseas for many years, where markets are unreliable, and vegetables poorly labeled. My mother, seeking parsley for a recipe, wasn't sure if the bunch of greens she was holding was the correct leafy plant. So, she pulled off a few leaves, handed them to me and said, "Taste this, and tell me if it's parsley or cilantro?" Before she could finish the question, a metallic, burning sensation roared through my mouth, causing my eyes to water and nostrils to flare. Needless to say, it was NOT the parsley she was seeking. Ever since that day, I can detect even the TINIEST amount in any sauce, salsa or marinade, and all I have to say is: NO THANK YOU!"
- Kelli Perkasie, PA
"It tastes like soap! It's bizarre that people like this vile stuff! My mom loves it, and used to put it in everything she cooked, despite my pleas, until she heard somewhere that if cilantro tastes like soap to you, that means you're allergic to it. Well, before that happened, I had an experience that certainly supported that theory. On my first date with a guy who I had just been friends with for a while, we had lunch at a small Thai cafe, then went on to a local science museum. I hadn't eaten much of my food, since it was positively TEEMING with cilantro, and although I tried because I was starving, I could not get past the horrid taste. Shortly after arriving at the museum, I began to feel ill and tried to ignore it...until I vomited right on the musical stairs, while my date tried to both hold back my hair and pretend not to know me at the same time.
And yet, dear readers, he still dated me for over a year. Turns out, he hated cilantro too."
"First off... here in New Zealand, we know cilantro as "coriander", so obviously this little herb has adapted to survive in many far-off countries. I first came across "cilantro" when I wanted to plant a herb garden, and simultaneously began reading some of my recipe books - many recipes called for the use of "coriander". Fine. I knew I wanted the old parsley, mint, and even a bit of thyme, but hey, why not try some of this oft-mentioned "coriander". So, innocently I planted all of the above herbs.... looking GREAT in the herb box.. I'd pick a bit of parsley and munch on it, smugly patting myself on the back for 'growing my own'. But then.... I pulled off a lush-looking piece of Cilantro/Coriander - looking so much like my beloved Parsley, I couldn't wait to savour the taste....... OH. MY. GOD. To say I needed an anti-emetic would be an understatement! The taste! The TEXTURE! THE HORROR!!!!! I'm now re-living the trauma so I just can't go on, suffice to say I WON'T be cooking with THAT herb, it's been pulled up and relegated to the compost!!"
- Margherita Auckland
"My 2nd anniversary and my husband spent all day and lots of money creating the perfect anniversary meal which consisted of crab cakes (main spice - cilantro) and morrocan trout (covered in cilantro). He tried so hard, I had to eat it. (Picture goosebumps and cold sweats - but nonetheless eaten.) I said something gentle about the interesting flavour cilantro imparted so feelings weren't hurt, and I wasn't quite sure if I really liked it - ha ha. Point not taken but since I do the cooking it stays out of the house.
Fast forward 6 years. Six sweet cilatro-free years, and my husband has found a new favourite viet-thai place to eat lunch (about 3 times a week). I couldn't stand the smell of him when he got home. I found his pores were emitting some putrid gangrene-like smell everytime he ate there. You guessed it! It was metabolised cilantro. He loves it!!! He even eats the cilantro sprig meant for garnish.
I have two kids with this man. I'm so confused. "
- Rachel Kitchener
"When I was 5 years old, we went to visit family friends whom we visited on a regular basis. My father is from Chile, and the parents of whom we were visiting were from Chile (father) and the Philipines (mother), and therefore we ate alot of differnet spicey and ethnic foods.
Unfortunately, being a product of an immigrant father, there were some very strict rules, especially surrounding the dinner table. One classic was that you had to eat everything on your plate before you could actually leave the table.
Well, this famous meal was laced with the vile weed, and instant tasting of it made me gag. I suffered through 4 hours of sitting at the dinner table trying to keep down this insufferable cilantro-filled hell. Oh, I complained, saying that the food was making me gag, and that I couldn't eat it, but I was forced none-the-less. The other children left the table within the first hour of the ordeal, and yet I sat there (my father thinking I was just being stubborn) until I spooned in every last morsel.
Of course, at the time I had no way of indicating or knowing that it was the cilantro in the food, and I did not encounter the evilness until man years later....
... eating at a thai restaurant. I was with work friends, anxious to partake in this new cultural experience. I smell something weird, which kind of makes my mouth water in a not-so-good way. I think nothing of it, take a bite and immediately gag and slightly throw up the food. This is the moment when I first learned the name of my nemesis.
i have since come to know cilantro well... we play a little cat and mouse game know and then. I work in a rural village in Ecuador,and there it is, lurking in my first bowl of soup from my host family. I am asked over to my wife's aunts for our first "couple" supper with individual relatives, and cilantro is there waiting unexpectedly. (Interesting to note, after we both explained to them that I was "alergic" to cilantro, they made me a quick pita pizza with olives... another vile substance. But I ate those olives quite happily knowing I was avoiding the cilantro).
People say I will come to like ti if I just keep trying it. I'm sure I could convince myself to like a quick kick in the crotch if done enough times, but that doesn't mean I want to go through the experience. My mother in-law even says she came to like it after hating it, and I call her a liar! My father in-law tries to sneak it into my food in little doses, but the nose and tongue cannot be fooled.
I hate cilantro! I have found solace in this brotherhood of cilantro haters."
- Marc Iturriaga Waterloo
"I don't know really if I hate the taste of cilantro when mixed in foods, but the smell of the fresh variety is the worst!
I was making cheese trays for a party once and the supermarket did not have fresh parsely to use as the classic "bed of greens" garnish that make trays look professional, so I purchased cilantro instead.
While I was making up the trays I had the bag of cilantro sitting on the table beside me. I noticed the acidic pee-like smell right away, but tried to ignore it in favour of portraying the confident party planner attitude, however as time passed I became more and more irritated by the smell. Eventually I became so angry at everyone around me that I ripped up the icky garnish from the cheese trays and threw the whole works out!"
- Leslie T Newmarket
"I have had a deadly garlic allergy since I was 8 years old, so I am very accustomed to checking with chefs and hosts what the ingredients are in the food I am offered. About 10 years ago, I attended a potluck dinner. Everyone was aware of the food allergy I have, and they were willing to omit the garlic for the meal. We are a culturally diverse group of friends, and I dug into a great rice dish from an Indian friend. I immediately felt this reaction in my mouth, extending down into my throat. It felt similar to the reaction I have with garlic, but a little different as I had a metallic taste in my mouth. Two friends noticed my distress, and turned to the friend who made the rice dish. She was horrified and swore up and down that she had not used garlic. I have avoided cilantro ever since, but it does add another thing I have to mention when dining out. A common theme I am reading in the other members' comments is an immediate reaction to the cilantro, whether it is a chemical reaction to a component in the cilantro, I don't know, but it is definetly a shared experience. Last year, we went to an Indian restaurant, where I informed the waiter of my two allergies. Guess what, my butter chicken arrived with not only garlic but cilantro piled on top. I had to send the dish back, it was a ruined meal, as everyone finished long before I received my second dish fixed according to my request. Mexican restaurants have been good about honouring my requests. It only takes one mistake to ruin a meal, as I find the taste stays in my mouth long after I have spit out the food."
- Jen Toronto, Ontario
"It was a party, in my teenage years. My aunty had lovingly made all her own appetisers. There were these small rice balls which looked quite appetising. I popped one in my mouth and started to chew, but something wasn't right, a flavour, I'm not even sure if it was a flavour, it was more just a sense of seomthing wrong, something just OFF. I'm not a fussy eater, I'll eat practically anything. I simply couldn't swallow it. I just kept chewing it in horror. And I couldn't spit it out, my aunty was nearby watching. Eventually I managed to sneak outside and deposit it in the garden. What was it that made this seemingly ordinary rice ball impossible to swallow?
In those days I had a running thing going with my younger brother, he was hard up for cash and I'd dare him to do things for money. So I bet him $10 he couldn't swallow one of those rice balls. $10 was a lot of money for him back then, but try as he might he also couldn't bring himself to swallow it!
What was it that made these rice balls impossible to swallow? I found out many years later. I'm sure you know the answer."
- Dan Melbourne
"The first time I remember tasting this gross crap was about 5 years ago. I had knee surgery and a kind(?) coworker brought me dinner one night. I was soo hungry, because I was depending on my husband to bring me meals (I couldn't get upstairs to the kitchen) and he had forgotten me once again. The food (it was some kind of vegetarian rice/pasta dish) was still hot and I got back in bed with the plate and a spoon and dug in. Oh my God! What is this taste that's making my throat muscles tighten up and making me wince?? It tasted so bad I couldn't straighten my face back out... I was wincing and spitting the food back onto the plate. I hobbled to the bathroom and brushed my teeth and brushed the back of my tongue and rinsed for about 15 minutes trying to get rid of every fraction of that horrible taste. I didn't know what it was though. Then a couple of weeks ago I got a chicken quesadilla at Whole Foods market, heated it up, and AAAHHHH!! That taste again!! I read the ingredients and I saw cilantro was one of them. So that's what that nasty stuff was 5 years ago!! At least now I know what it's called so I can tell people not to put it in my food. I thought I was safe but a couple of nights ago my husband brought home a roasted chicken from a Spanish chicken place, and CRAP! One bite and I could taste that they had used cilantro to rub on the outside of the chicken. My husband was so hurt (and confused) that I wouldn't eat it, but no freakin way! Since that happened, I've developed this actual fear of tasting it again. Like I'm almost afraid to eat anything I didn't cook myself. I have a fear of having it in my mouth and being out somewhere that I can't brush my teeth. Are people who like this stuff insane? Like those people who eat (and chew) their pills because something is broken in their brains that make them not realize something tastes horrible? I have no respect for people who *like* this stuff. It's one thing if they say oh it doesn't bother me much, but if I saw someone eating it on purpose, like biting into a sprig of it, I would lose every ounce of respect for that person. I know that makes me sound crazy but that's just how deeply I despise the taste of that nasty green crap."
- Laurie Shady Side, MD
"I didn't know I hated cilantro. I thought I hated Mexican food. This didn't occur as odd to me until I remembered that I used to love Mexican food as a child, and now all of a sudden I hated it. After thinking on it for a while, I remembered my dear mother's tendency to eliminate pretty much any spice whatsoever from her cooking (She likes her food bland), and so I concluded that it must be something in "real" Mexican food that I hated. After some research I realized that recipes for Mexican food always have cilantro in them, and made the connection. Since then I have never purchased cilantro, I avoid Mexican food at all costs, and I make a point to tell all my friends that I hate cilantro whether or not it occurs in conversation naturally. Thank you."
- Lindsay Vancouver
"I am a 6'2" mild mannered man by nature. I love most things food and entertainment. I even have two little Shih Tzu puppies that I love and adore. Thats how nice I am. But man you get me near cilantro and all bets are off. My wife loves to eat ethnic foods and me being the mild mannered good sport that I am try to accomadate her multicultural food desires whenever I can. She suggested a thai restaurant for dinner. I said "noodles thats cool. I dig noodles... sure lets go" I bellowed. Well when we got there we ordered an apetizer. Spring rolls to be precise. I was like "hmm rice paper, noodles, shrimp so far so good." WRONG. Hidden in these beautifully little wrapped nuggets of joy is pure evil. Yeup you guessed in CILANTRO!!! Apparently they chop it up real fine and thin and even put some mint in there to throw you off the Cilantro trail. "Why I tell you WHY???" Up to that point we were having a wonderful evening. Then wham.... one bite of cilantro and it was argument city...population 2. I couldn't taste anything good for the rest of that night because the cilanto left such a vile taste on my tongue. My pad thai was ruined, my evening was ruined. Even my little puppers wouldn't come near me when I got home. Luckily I had some icecream and that apparently washes the cilantro crude from your mouth. Once that ice cream was finished I was back to normal. Man o Man. DOWN THE WITH CILANTRO I SAY.........Thanks for listening peeps. "
- Timbo Dracut, MA
"Like all of you, I hate cilantro. If I go to certain restaurants, say Indian, I know I can expect it in dishes, and can adjust accordingly. However, when I go to an American-style restaurant, I donít expect it to be used as an all-purpose garnish. My husbandís favorite restaurant in Minnetonka sprinkled it on everything Ė pizzas, pastas, salads. Everything. I got to a point that every time I ordered, I had to ask that they not use it as a garnish. They listened about half the time, always giving me the evil eye.
Last year they went out of business because they neglected to pay their taxes for five years. Canít say I was heartbroken.
- A MB, MN
"i think all of you are great. i don't understand people who love cilantro. i don't know if those who love cilantro and those who understand how foul it is should ever date. it's one of those fundamental things that i think you have to see eye-to-eye on for it to work out."
- Jacinta Brooklyn, NY
" This noxious herb is now so common in British supermarkets as to oust decent, fragrant herbs like sage, basil and parsley off the shelves in some cases. These stores like to dictate what we eat and as soon as something is mentioned by some ghastly celebrity chef they promote it. Cilantro/ coriander leaves should be banned, or at least dire warnings of its presence should be given. We seem to be slaves of fashion even in food,and most people end up eating this filth as some women succumb to wearing high heels and other painful items of dress."
- Marjorie Christie Manchester UK
"The first time I was subjected to cilantro was in a Vietnamese restaurant. I almost puked. How could anyone put something so vile into food? Since then, I have struggled to keep my food cilantro free. I have to warn the waiters at Indian restaurants that I will throw up if they put it in my food otherwise, they want to sprinkle it on everything.
The worst experience I've had was when my husband and I were in Brasil. I was recovering from amoebic dysentery and finally felt like eating after about 5 days. The restaurant was supposed to be very good, but when the food arrived, it was permeated with cilantro. Gross!
I have a few friends that also hate cilantro and other friends that dislike some other "food" flavor so most of them have some understanding of my hate of cilantro. All of the people I call friend realize my distaste for the vileness of cilantro - it is one of the first things anyone learns about me. (One friend of my smuggled a jar of cilantro into my spice cabinet as a joke.)
Both of my parents like cilantro as does my sister so, if it is genetic, it may be a recessive gene.
- Michelle Mount Airy, MD
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Please contribute YOUR cilantro story.