It is a Love and Hate relationship with the cilantro. The herb is referred Chinese Parsley or Coriander leaves. When I first went to grocery stores in Europe, I ended up most of the time with parsley in my cart. Later, I used to pinch the stem and smell the aroma :)
In Indian household, cilantro is used pretty much in every dish.. The leaves are sprinkled to give a final touch for any kind of curries, rice and gravy. When the leaves touch the heated food, it infuse an aromatic flavor to the dish. Other than Indian, I cannot imagine Mexican salsa without cilantro!
I was quiet surprise to know, many people hate this herb.There is an anti cilantro community: ihatecilantro.com.. Most of them, think cilantro taste like "dish soap", bedbug, metallic, etc.... I could not even imagine all those smells relating to this beautiful, sexy herb. Well, Julia Child is among who loathes this herb.
This dish is totally aromatic, feature mainly this herb. I got in "Aval Vikadan" Tamil Recipes booklet, don't have the edition, year, author, etc... Just reading the title, I knew I gonna love this dish. It is an excellent side dish for : idli, dosa, chapati and even for plain rice.
Cilantro(kothamalli) : 1 big bunch or 2 cups firmly packed
Onion: 1 big onion- minced
Garlic: 4 to 6 cloves minced
Tamarind: 1 to 2 tsp paste (diluted in 1/4 cup water)
Turmeric: 1/4 tsp
Hing: a small pinch
Salt: to taste
Oil: 1 to 2 tsp
Dry chili: 5 to 6 num (can be reduced according ur spice level)
Coriander seeds: 2 tsp
Channa dhal / bengal gram: 2 tsp
Cumin: 1/2 tsp
Dry roast and grind into fine powder.
1.Chop the leaves and stem, rinse in cold water and drain it.
2. Heat the oil, fry the onion and garlic, add the cilantro leaves, fry for few seconds.
3. Add the tamarind juice diluted in water + hing+ turmeric (tip: add off the quantity and increase later according your taste later)
4. Add 1/4 cup of water and let it cook until the raw smell goes away.
5. Sprinkle the masala and adjust the salt and cook another 5 minutes. (if you want little watery adjust the water)
You can serve with idlis, or even plain rice.
So do you Love or Hate this poor herb?