Papalo (Porophyllum ruderale spp macrocephalum)

This herb was unknown to us when it appeared in our Pick box last week. Frog Song called it Bolivian Coriander and one sniff tells you why. You can definitely get the cilantro like smell of it. So we used it as a garnish on an okra frittata, in banana wrapped fish, and in a mango salsa.

Bethany and Sam described it as lemony, citrus, pungent, medicinal. I think I prefer cilantro overall. This herb is a bit stronger. It lasts well in the fridge standing in a glass of water.

Here is what I found out about it. It is native to Central America and the southwest of the US. The USDA plant profile is here.

Eliza Lord at Appalachian Feethas a good post on growing the herb and has a number of recipes and Victoria Challancin at Flavors of the Sun adds a few more, and finally Gina Ruiz adds a dose of enthusiasm for the herb at Doña Lupe’s Kitchen. On page 190 of Diana Kennedy’s classic book The Essential Cuisines of Mexico she mentions this herb in her recipe for Pueblan Semitas (a sandwich) and calls it  papaloquelite.

I would love love to find one of those sandwiches.

2 thoughts on “Papalo (Porophyllum ruderale spp macrocephalum)

  1. Nice blog. And thanks for the mention. I love pápalo–in fact, I haven’t thought of it in a long while. Am definitely ready for a pork sandwich on a cemita roll, with a bit of the herb. Yum. P.S. As a native Floridian, I’ll be checking out the rest of your posts. Well done!


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