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Jan 5, 2010 04:00 PM

What to do with papalo/pipicha?

I brought back what seems to be papalo or pipicha (sites seem to differ on what it's called) from Mexico and I'm looking for some suggestions on how to use it. I've never used or ate it before so I want something that will let it shine; I was kinda thinking of making it into an herb oil to brush fish with but I wasn't sure if that would be too overpowering or not. Thanks!

Picture added to clarify what it is.

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  1. I don't know what you have, Andrew, but the papalo/pipicha I've seen is a broad leaf plant. I'd be sure it's what you think it is before using it as a food item.

    1 Reply
    1. re: todao

      Hm... I encountered this issue while searching, I found papalo/pipicha descriptions with some sites showing pics of the broad leaf and some showing pics of the thin leaf plant. Perhaps someone can confirm that papalo is /only/ one or the other? Or if anyone has any idea what the herb I have is...

    2. I'm with todao on this, doesn't look like papalo; looks more like (somewhat wilted) epazote to me. What's it smell/taste like?

      2 Replies
      1. re: bushwickgirl

        It smells like an intense fragrant cilantro; judging by the pics on google, I'm pretty sure it isn't epazote.

        1. re: AndrewK512

          Well, you'd know if it was, epazote smells like gasoline, IMO.
          I think todao might have nailed it with the pipicha call, posted downthread.

      2. Dude, that looks more like marijuana than papalo (or even epazote).


        1. Initially, I thought this might be it:

          But I think it might be:

          pipicha porophyllum tagetoides
          Heavily scented, reminds you of cilantro. It does appear with enlongated leaf structures

          Looks like maybe I learned something today.

          1. Hi, i'm mexican so i can tell that the herb you have is "pipicha" there are some recipes you can cook with this one but not that much that i can share, i think this is a very strong herb, so be careful on the amount you put on your dish.

            You can cook "salsa verde"
            Green tomatoes, jalapeƱo chili or serrano chili (green ones, fresh), garlic, cilantro, onion
            Cook tomatoes into boiling water, let them cool. Put tomatoes, onion, garlic, chili (as much as you want or can handle), cilantro and pipicha into a blender. This salsa is great for chicken tacos, or any mexican dish.

            You can cook: "veggies & pork" (i don't have a name for this dish LOL)
            You will need pork chops, red tomatoes diced (or blended), onion diced, garlic diced, green zuccini diced, diced or canned corn, if you can find it: poblano chili, cilantro and pipicha.
            Cook the pork chops in boiling water with salt. In a pan stir some oil, and add the veggies and let them cook, add some pork broth, at last add the pork chops and add final touches. enjoy!

            BTW.. by this time maybe you have rotten pipicha hahaa