Coriander, the Versatile Spice

Creepy crawlies and coriander—not a comparison one might expect, but the two share a surprising quality. What do bedbugs and coriander have in common, you ask? The spice coriander is named from the Greek term “koris” (or bedbug) because its unripe leaves and seeds, when crushed, smell strikingly like a bed bug!

Despite this strange similarity, coriander (Coriandrum sativum) offers more pleasing flavor attributes in its leaves, stems, and ripened seeds. The seeds form what is considered a spice, while the leaves (fresh or dried) are known as cilantro and are classified as an herb.

Both the coriander and cilantro have been used in cooking and medicinal applications since about 5,000 BC in ancient Egypt, Greece, and other Mediterranean regions. Coriander seeds have been discovered in Egyptian tombs, and the spice also is mentioned in Sanskrit writings. Ancient Egyptians, Asians and Greeks even believed coriander possessed love-enhancing properties.

Today, coriander and cilantro are popular ingredients in Chinese, Mexican, Indian, Polish, and Thai dishes, to name a few. Food experts regard coriander among the most versatile spices, as indicated by its prevalence in the cuisines of so many different cultures. You also can find coriander in A.C. Legg’s Cracked Pepper Smoked Sausage Seasoning, Blend 210. This seasoning blend gives a full, rich Eastern European flavor including garlic, onion, and—of course—coriander, complimented with cracked pepper. Order your Blend 210 from a distributor today!

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