Coriander is an important spice crop having a prime position in flavouring food. The plant is a thin stemmed, small, bushy herb, 25 to 50 cm in height with many branches and umbels. Leaves are alternate, compound. The whole plant has a pleasant aroma. Inflorescence is a compound umbel comprises 5 smaller umbels. Fruit is globular, 3 to 4 mm diameter, when pressed break into two locules each having one seed. Fruit has delicate fragrance; seeds are pale white to light brown in colour.
There are two distinct morphological types, one erect and tall with a comparatively stronger main shoot and the other bushy with a relatively weaker main shoot and longer spreading branches.
It is a native of Mediterranean and commercially produced in India, Morocco, Russia, East European countries, France, Central America, Mexico, and USA. Coriander is a tropical crop and can be successfully cultivated as a rabi season crop in an area free from severe frost during February when the crop flowers and sets its seeds.
The young plant is used for flavouring and garnishing curries and soups. The fruits (seeds) are widely used as condiments with or without roasting in the preparation of curry powders, sausages and seasonings. It is an important ingredient in the manufacture of food flavourings, in bakery products, meat products, soda & syrups, puddings, candy preserves and liquors. In medicines it is used as a carminative, refrigerant, diuretic, and aphrodisiac. In household medicines, it is used against seasonal fever, stomach disorders, and nausea. Coriander oil and oleoresins are primarily used in seasonings for sausages and other meat products.
Spanish : Cilantro French : Corriandre German : Koriander Swedish : Koriander Arabic : Kuzhbare Dutch : Koriander Portuguese : Coentro Russian : Koriandr Japanese : Koendoro Chinese : Hu-sui Hindi : Dhania or Dhanya Bengali : Dhana, Dhania Gujarati : Kothmiri, Libdhaba Kannada : Kothambri, Kothamiri bija Kashmiri : Deaniwal, Kothambalari Malayalam : Kothumpalari bija Marathi : Dhana Oriya : Dhania Punjabi : Dhania Sanskrit : Dhanyaka Tamil : Kothamalli Telugu : Dhaniyalu