This is a preview of the content in our French Food Decoder app. Get the app to:
  • Read offline
  • Remove ads
  • Access all content
  • Use the in-app Map to find sites, and add custom locations (your hotel...)
  • Build a list of your own favourites
  • Search the contents with full-text search functionality
  • ... and more!
iOS App Store Google Play


coriander or cilantro


Although Charlemagne encouraged the planting of coriander, fresh coriander (cilantro) was next to impossible to find twenty years ago in France outside Asian and North African supermarkets, but that has changed dramatically, much to the dismay of corianderphobes.

Maybe the ancient Greeks were, too: although it was cultivated in Mycenaean times, they named it koríandron after smelly bedbugs! Alexander the Great took it to India, where it became a hit. Modern Greeks hardly eat the fresh leaves at all.


Coriandre also means coriander seeds, which have always been popular everywhere for their citrussy perfumes

Herbs and spices

Text © Dana Facaros

Images by Dana Facaros, Thamizhpparithi Maari