For years I’ve kept a small tin of toasted cracked coriander seeds in my spice drawer to use as an emergency flavor enhancer. Its slightly lemony-orangy-herbal flavor and pleasing crackle provides the perfect little alt-note on all sorts of unexpected foods. Lately, I stir it into homemade sauerkraut. I use it to crust inch-thick slabs of tuna or swordfish, that I then sear…and I love it mixed into scone dough and on just on orange cake…

The list continues…

crunchy peanut or almond butter
smoked salmon
rice pudding
cooked grains like rice, barley or faro
caramelized bananas

In league with creme fraiche and snipped chives, it is sensational on all sorts of starchy vegetables like new potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn-on-the-cob and beets…as well as on smoked and roasted salmon…

A few coriander seeds added to the pepper mill makes black pepper mysteriously aromatic…

Sally Schneider


How to Toast and Crack Coriander Seed

Toasting the seeds amplifies the flavor: Scatter the coriander seeds in a small heavy skillet. Toast over moderately low heat, shaking the pan frequently until you just get a whiff of their fragrance.

Sally Schneider

You can crack coriander seeds several ways:

—Place ½ teaspoon or so in a garlic press and squeeze to crack the seeds; open the press, jiggle the seeds to rearrange and repeat…

—Transfer to a mortar, and crush the seeds coarsely with a pestle…

Sally Schneider

—Or, place a sheet of paper towel on the work surface and pour the seeds onto it. Use the side of a chef’s knife or the flat bottom of a heavy glass to press down on the spices to crush them. Carefully lift the sides of the towel and tilt the crushed spices into a small bowl. Alternatively, coarsely grind them in a spice grinder or clean coffee grinder for a less rustic effect


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