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Great Cilantro Aversion Article Detailed in Today's NYT Article

michele cindy Apr 14, 2010 03:44 AM

I am one who has an aversion to cilantro. Gradually, I began to tolerate it. I never realized why this could be until the writer in this article wrote about a neuroscientist's own aversion. Overtime one puts up with the taste of the cilantro because it reminds them of good times eating with friends and family. A-ha! This explanation works for me. I thought back, and my 1st few encounters with the herb were over meals I had in college with good friends. When I 1st encountered cilantro I would always pick out the "soapy" tasting leaves, as time went by (it's taken over 20 years!) but today I don't do that anymore and each time I eat it I am taken back to those early meals. Thank you Harold McGee for bringing this to my attention!


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    jackbauer RE: michele cindy Apr 14, 2010 06:25 AM

    Great article! I've always hated cilantro, even a small amount of a fine chop in a burrito renders it inedible for me.

    1. buttertart RE: michele cindy Apr 14, 2010 06:31 AM

      It makes sense, but there are many of those of us for whom cilantro had us at the first leaf. I adore it and always have. I'm glad you've been able to overcome your aversion!

      1. Veggo RE: michele cindy Apr 14, 2010 06:54 AM

        You are ready to try Robert Lauriston's cilantro rice! And when fresh corn is available, his same procedure works well with sauteed corn cut from the cob, with a little extra sauteed diced jalapeno.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Veggo
          Caitlin McGrath RE: Veggo Apr 14, 2010 01:15 PM

          Thank you for the corn idea! When corn hits the farmers' markets here, I will be doing this.

          Robert Lauriston's cilantro rice: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/328780

        2. mels RE: michele cindy Apr 14, 2010 05:03 PM

          I loved cilantro immediately from first bite and never understood the passion with which people hate cilantro. I mean, I hate ham but you don't see me going on tirades about it like some cilantro haters I know do. This article definitely gave me some perspective into the cilantro haters' minds. Great read!

          1 Reply
          1. re: mels
            sharonlouk RE: mels Apr 14, 2010 07:44 PM

            I'm one of those people where it makes everything taste like soap, so it kind of ruins a good meal for me. I wish I liked it! I could stop picking it off my food. It's easier to avoid ham than to avoid cilantro if you're eating out.

          2. l
            LauraGrace RE: michele cindy Apr 14, 2010 05:43 PM

            Fascinating! I have recently *begun* to get over my cilantro aversion, and you know what did it for me? Indian food. I fell in love with a local Indian resto that puts cilantro (rightly) in or on several of its dishes. Somehow it tastes completely different in Indian food as opposed to Mexican food.

            4 Replies
            1. re: LauraGrace
              rozz01 RE: LauraGrace Apr 14, 2010 07:50 PM

              I felt the same way with Thai when I was younger. Tom Kha initiated me into something thats a bit of an addiction.

              1. re: LauraGrace
                PhilD RE: LauraGrace Apr 15, 2010 05:20 PM

                Is this aversion to cilantro just a US thing? I don't recall meeting any non-US people who feel the same way.

                Laura may have hit on the reason, in other countries we eat as part of Thai or Indian food, not usually Mexican. Maybe it works better with those cuisines and therefore we overcome or neurological phobia at an early age?

                1. re: PhilD
                  yamalam RE: PhilD Apr 15, 2010 10:11 PM

                  My Filipina grandmother hated cilantro. Very close to Thailand and India, still hated it.

                2. re: LauraGrace
                  chicgail RE: LauraGrace Apr 17, 2010 04:19 AM

                  I've found that it doesn't bother me as much on Thai food and I noticed it in Thailand. I wonder if there is a different variety of cilantro that grows in Asia.

                3. JohnE O RE: michele cindy Apr 16, 2010 03:14 PM

                  The first half dozen times I had cilantro I loved it, until I was told that I should hate it. Sorry, I still like it. Actually I go through about a bunch every other week at this point. Neither my wife or 2 kids have complained about it being in their food, so I assume they tolerate it as well.

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