September 12, 2012
I used to live in Mexico as a kid in the 80s, in the state of Chihuahua. Never had cilantro on ANYTHING! Then I moved to Bangkok, Thailand in 1990, never tasted cilantro amazingly. (Perhaps my hate for it occurred after puberty?)
Then, I moved to NY in high school and went over a friend's house for dinner. His mom made mashed potatoes with cheese and, what I though was, parsley. On the first bite, I spat it out in confusion and apologized. They asked "What's wrong?" I said, "Um, I think there's soap or something on my fork or plate." So they got my a new fork and plate and the same thing happened when I tried the potatoes again.
So, I said, "Uh, something's in the potatoes that tastes like chemicals." She said, "It's only potatoes, cheddar, and cilantro." I asked "What's cilantro?" She gave me a raw cilantro leaf to try. I had to hold back my vomit and instantly lost my appetite.
Since then, any restaurant or dinner party I go to, I have to ask "Is there cilantro in this dish?" As I get older, I now can barely stomach cooked cilantro in salsa, but even then, I make sure to brush off any visible leaves on my tortilla chip.