Using Coriander in Bengali & Indian Cooking Explained

Coriander, which has a slight nutty, citrusy flavour, is one of few special ingredients that are used in a variety of dishes, from plain simple veg curry to spicy non-veg spreads.

It gives a warm and intense flavour to any dish. Coriander leaves are also used in cooking for their unique, amazing fragrance which does not overpower other flavours.

They are also used for garnishing, especially in salads.

Uses of Coriander leaves

Uses of Coriander in Bengali & Indian Cuisines

As a Bengali, I can tell you that the Bongs can hardly do without ground coriander. We use it in almost every item, from plain vegetable curry to rich chicken or mutton items.

It brings a classic, distinct intense flavour to any dish it is added to. Both fish and meat are marinated with coriander powder before cooking.

Coriander powder is even added to some vegetables such as brinjals, pointed gourds, and potatoes before frying for a spicy crunch.

There are some recipes where coriander powder is not used. For example, postor tarkari (curry with poppy seeds paste).

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It is also not used in plain masoor dal. But coriander powder is used in cholar dal or matar dal preparations that usually have a very thick and rich texture.

If it comes to coriander leaves, these are used at the end of cooking to retain their fresh flavour. In Bengal, coriander leaves are added to masoor dal at the end of cooking and the dish tastes awesome.

These are also added to aloo siddha makha. Boiled potatoes are mashed and mixed with mustard oil, salt, chopped onions and chillies. Coriander leaves are an optional choice but when added, act as a flavour enhancer.

Dhania chicken is a famous dish. Pasted coriander leaves are cooked with marinated chicken.

The greenish look of the dish is as tempting as its flavourful taste. The same recipe can be replicated with some types of fishes such as, ruhi and catla.

The vegans should try the same recipe with paneer; it tastes delicious.

Coriander leaves, as a flavouring agent, are used in salads. In addition, they are extensively used in a variety of super delicious South Indian preparations.

Udipi Sambar is a famous dish from Udupi cuisine. It is a perfect side dish to be served with rice and a healthy recipe for people across all ages.

Coriander is also used in raita. Unlike plain raita, this variety is prepared with spices though it is not a rich dish. Cooked with plain yogurt and ground coriander, it is a comforting dish for everyone.

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Without coriander, some varieties of rasam will never taste so delicious. Tomato rasam is an authentic cuisine straight out of Tamils’ kitchens. Prepared with coriander seeds, this dish works best with rice.

Is Coriander Tasty?

Is Coriander Tasty

There are two opinions on the taste of coriander. These come from two groups – those who love coriander and those who don’t.

According to the first group, it offers a strong aroma and fresh citrus taste. The second group thinks it has a pungent smell and so they don’t like it.

What Can Be Made from Coriander?

I have already mentioned the kind of dishes that can be made from coriander.

You can say Coriander or cilantro is best used as the product of garnishing.

It is simply considered as one the easily available, grown and affordable garnishing agent.

It is used mainly in Bengali and north Indian dishes. You can also have Dhaniya chutney if you want.

How Do You Make Coriander Chicken Curry?

A fine paste is made of coriander leaves and a few green chillies. This paste is then mixed well with salt and a few common Indian spices.

This mixture is cooked with chicken on a slow flame. Some people use yogurt during preparation whereas others use milk (cow or coconut) at the end of cooking.

After the dish is done, fresh cream is added for taste enhancement.

Are Coriander and Cilantro the Same Thing?

Both coriander leaves and cilantro belong to the same plant, Coriandrum Sativum.

In America, the plant’s stem and leaves are called cilantro while dried seeds are called coriander.

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Internationally, the dried seeds are known as coriander seeds while stems and leaves are called coriander.

Questions & Answers:

Can You Cook Fresh Coriander?

Fresh coriander leaves are also used in cooking. Either these are added at the end of cooking or a paste is made of them before use.

What Goes Well with Coriander?

Both chapatis and rice go well with dhania chicken. The South Indian cuisines, which use coriander, make a perfect side dish with rice.

How is Coriander Used in Cooking?

Coriander is used in three forms – ground, seeds and leaves. Best usage as garnishing and grounded version as a good spice.

What Can You Do with Fresh Coriander?

Fresh coriander can be used for garnishing in salads, some kinds of dals and veg curries. You can make good coriander pickles if you want. It is tasty and a good digesting agent.

What Part of Coriander Do You Eat?

Seeds and Leaves both are sued for garnishing. You can eat both if you want.

What Meat Does Coriander Go With?

Pasted coriander leaves go best with chicken. Ground coriander is used for preparing both chicken and mutton.

How Do You Add Fresh Coriander to Curry?

Fresh coriander leaves are properly washed and used almost at the end of cooking to retain their freshness and flavours.

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