Why Cilantro Tastes Like Soap (For Some)

I like cilantro in moderation:

Some people may be genetically predisposed to dislike cilantro… But cilantrophobe genetics remain little known and aren’t under systematic investigation. … [An] anthropologist at the University of Otago in New Zealand, has traced unflattering remarks about cilantro flavor and the bug etymology — not endorsed by modern dictionaries — back to English garden books and French farming books from around 1600, when medieval dishes had fallen out of fashion. She suggests that cilantro was disparaged as part of a general effort to define the new European table against the flavors of the old. … Flavor chemists have found that cilantro aroma is created by a half-dozen or so substances, and most of these are modified fragments of fat molecules called aldehydes. The same or similar aldehydes are also found in soaps and lotions and the bug family of insects.

via The Curious Cook






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