Thursday, December 07, 2006

This cilantro smells funny


n 1: Old World herb with aromatic leaves and seed resembling parsley [syn: coriander, coriander plant, Chinese parsley, Coriandrum sativum]

2: parsley-like herb used as seasoning or garnish [syn: coriander, Chinese parsley]

WordNet® 2.0, © 2003 Princeton University

It was supposed to be special. Christian had been thinking about this particular Mexican feast for days. Visions of carne asada danced in his head.

He could see Kristin wandering down the cobblestone road leading to a Spanish villa, her arms full of roses and carrying a bucket of freshly drawn well water. She would pass by his door and he would walk out, not really by accident, and say, "Please, lady, rest your feet, and come into my humble hut and join me for a feast of carne asada and guacamole and Santitas brand tortilla chips and Shiner Bock beer."

It was 3 p.m. He drove straight from work to the grocery. First he carefully selected the avocados. They were perfectly formed, with just the right amount of give. Excellent. Then he bought steak, red onions, tomatoes, jalapenos and a sixer of Shiner.

The cilantro was unusually beautiful for December. It was so green and fresh and shiny.

He was halfway through chopping the herbs when he heard the front door. It was Kristin. She was early.

She walked into the kitchen, liking what she smelled. Christian said it was probably the freshly squeezed limes, because that was all he had done so far. "How far down the stems should I chop the cilantro?" He asked.

Then the bubble burst.

"That doesn't smell like cilantro," she said.

She looked closer.

"That's parsley."

Oh, misery. Oh, despair. Oh, how quickly Kristin and Christian bagged up and froze the parsley and headed out to Las Maracas, their favorite neighborhood Mexican joint (formerly Las Fiestas de Mexico).

No roses. No humble hut. No home-grilled carne asada. And certainly no cilantro.

Album of the moment: Simon and Garfunkel, Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme


  • Oh, how very tragic! Christian, you look horribly despondent in the picture. I hope the restaurant Mexican food perked you up. :)

    By Anonymous guinness girl, at 11:18 AM, December 08, 2006  

  • I know I shouldn't laugh at someone's cilantro misfortune. I LOVE cilantro, so I can sympathize. But I must confess, that picture also made me giggle a bit. I'm obviously a horrible, horrible person.

    By Blogger lizgwiz, at 12:58 PM, December 08, 2006  

  • Haha...I love the photographic documentary. Makes me feel as if I was there.

    By Blogger Stella, at 8:41 PM, December 08, 2006  

  • GG, he did perk up once they placed the never-ending basket o' chips under his nose at Las Maracas.

    Liz, you're not horrible. Kristin was laughing her ass off. Or maybe she's a horrible person too.

    Stella, it was pretty damn funny. Add the distinctly non-cilantro-like aroma of chopped parsley and two gray kittens underfoot hoping Daddy will drop them some parsley and the picture is complete.

    By Blogger CK1, at 8:53 PM, December 08, 2006  

  • Oh, the hee-heeing.


    "Despondent" is such a wonderfully descriptive word for that photo. It summarizes all the "I just spent allll that time and alllll that money ... for ... ???!!!??"

    I'll have to show this to my sister, who is horribly allergic to cilantro. And then she will be even more cruel than I. And by the way, Kristin is only rarely and very inadvertently horrible. And she always apologizes prettily and sincerely. (Hee!)

    But -- the kitties? Did they get to go "nyar nyar nyar" on some parsley? Should kitties? (I dunno; there's no parsley allowed in our family. Stems -- ha! whoops! -- from a long-ago farm dispute. Not making that up.)

    By Blogger grandefille, at 12:27 PM, December 09, 2006  

  • I am your cilantro opposite!! I love flat parsley. But I can only take cilantro in small doses [I recognize that this is strange for someone who loves Mexican food].

    Great story. I'm glad it had a happy ending.

    By Anonymous lcreekmo, at 11:26 AM, December 13, 2006  

  • I once planned on making albondigas and accidentally picked up flat leaf parsley. So, I sent my husband out for a new bunch of cilantro. He came home with flat leaf parsley.

    The third trip to the store we got it right. They had mislabeled the produce. Since then I have unashamedly sniffed to be sure.

    By Blogger Heather, at 11:49 AM, December 13, 2006  

  • lmao! I've done that EXACT same thing. I didn't realize it until my wife called me out either.

    On another note, Shiner Bock, that's some good strong beer right there.

    By Blogger Jeffrey, at 12:32 PM, December 13, 2006  

  • I couldn't help but giggle at the cilantro 'transformation' into parsley. All too often, I confuse flat leaf parsley and cilantro @ the grocery store and end up getting the wrong one! Oh well...

    By Anonymous veuveclicquot, at 9:45 AM, December 18, 2006  

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