|Eryngium foetidum leaves|
Eryngium foetidum is a tropical perennial and annual herb in the family Apiaceae. Common names include culantro, Mexican coriander and long coriander. It is native to Mexico and South America, but is cultivated worldwide. In the United States, where it is not well known outside Latino communities, the name culantro sometimes causes confusion with Coriandrum sativum (also in Apiaceae), the leaves of which are known as cilantro, and which culantro is said to taste like.
Common names 
Commonly known as culantro in English-speaking Caribbean countries, Eryngium foetidum is also referred to as chadon, shadon, shado beni (or incorrectly as shadow benny), or bandhania. Other common names include: recao (Puerto Rico), long coriander, wild or Mexican coriander, fitweed, spiritweed, stinkweed, duck-tongue herb, sawtooth or saw-leaf herb, and sawtooth coriander.
In Southeast Asian cooking, the Vietnamese name ngò gai', The Cambodian (Khmer) name ji ana (ជីររណារ) (other names are ជីរបារាំង ji barang, ជីរយួន ji yuon, ជីរបន្លា ji banla, ជីរសង្កើច ji sankoech), or (less often) the Thai name phak chi farang (Thai: ผักชีฝรั่ง, meaning "Farang's coriander") are sometimes used. In India, it is used mainly in the northeastern state of Manipur, where it is known by the local name awa phadigom or sha maroi, Mizoram, where it is known as bahkhawr and Tripura, where it is known as bilaati dhoinna (Bengali phrase that literally means English corriander).
E. foetidum is widely used in seasoning and marinating in the Caribbean, particularly in Panama, Puerto Rico and Trinidad and Tobago. It is also used extensively in Thailand, India, Vietnam, and other parts of Asia as a culinary herb. It dries well, retaining good color and flavor, making it valuable in the dried herb industry. It is sometimes used as a substitute for cilantro, but it has a much stronger taste.
In the United States, E. foetidum grows naturally in Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. It is sold in grocery stores as a culinary herb under the common names; "culantro" (pronounced /kuːˈlɑːntroʊ/) or "recao" (pronounced |re:`kow|).
Traditional medicine 
E. foetidum has been used in traditional medicine for burns, earache, fevers, hypertension, constipation, fits, asthma, stomachache, worms, infertility complications, snake bites, diarrhea, and malaria.
Eryngium foetidum is also known as E. antihystericum. The specific name antihystericum reflects the fact that this plant has traditionally been used for epilepsy. The plant is said to calm a person's 'spirit' and thus prevents epileptic 'fits', so is known by the common names spiritweed and fitweed. The anticonvulsant properties of this plant have been scientifically investigated.[medical citation needed] A decoction of the leaves has been shown to exhibit anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects in rats.
Eryngial is a chemical compound isolated from E. foetidum. The University of the West Indies at Mona, Jamaica, has investigated the use of enyngial as a treatment for human Strongyloides stercoralis infection (strongyloidiasis).
See also 
- Cuban cuisine
- Cuisine of the Dominican Republic
- Puerto Rican cuisine
- Thai cuisine
- Vietnamese cuisine
- Ramcharan, C. (1999). "Culantro: A much utilized, little understood herb". In: J. Janick (ed.), Perspectives on new crops and new uses. ASHS Press, Alexandria, Virginia; p. 506–509.
- Distribution of Eryngium foetidum in the United States United States Department of Agriculture
- Paul J.H.A., Seaforth C.E., Tikasingh T. (2011). "Eryngium foetidum L.: A review". Fitoterapia 82 (3): 302–308. doi:10.1016/j.fitote.2010.11.010.
- "Atlas of Florida Vascular Plants".
- Culantro. "Herbalpedia". The Herb Growing & Marketing Network.
- Simon, OR; Singh, N (1986). "Demonstration of anticonvulsant properties of an aqueous extract of Spirit Weed (Eryngium foetidum L.)". The West Indian medical journal 35 (2): 121–5. PMID 3739342.
- Sáenz, M. T.; Fernández, M. A.; García, M. D. (1997). "Antiinflammatory and analgesic properties from leaves ofEryngium foetidum L. (Apiaceae)". Phytotherapy Research 11 (5): 380. doi:10.1002/(SICI)1099-1573(199708)11:5<380::AID-PTR116>3.0.CO;2-#.
- Yarnell, A. "Home Field Advantage" Chemical & Engineering News, June 7, 2004. Volume 82, Number 23, p. 33.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Eryngium foetidum|
- Long coriander (Eryngium foetidum L.) page from Gernot Katzer's Spice Pages
- Mexican coriander (Eryngium foetidum L.) page Information on the various common names of long coriander and cultivation tips