Coriander happens to be one of my very favorite essential oils, especially when blended with sweet orange. The floral-sweet-green-lively scent puts a smile on my face every time I open the bottle. I use it in almost every blend I make (if possible…some blends it doesn’t suit).
If you think you don’t like coriander essential oil, try sniffing a whiff of its lovely aroma and tell me you didn’t smile 🙂
Read on for more info about this awesome essential oil!
Coriander Essential Oil
Botanical Name: Coriandrum sativum
Plant Part: Seeds
Extraction Method: Steam Distilled
Description: This annual or biennial plant is a native of Morocco and grows to about 1 meter (3 feet) in height. It has sparse, fine, feathery leaves and pinkish/white flowers. The brownish, globose seeds have a disagreeable smell until they ripen, when they take on their spicy aroma. The bright green delicate leaves, umbels of lace-like white flowers are followed by a mass of green (turning brown) round seeds. These seeds are hard and egg-shaped, borne in pairs, which do not separate. The Oleoresin has a strong aroma of coriander.
Color: Colorless to pale yellow clear liquid.
Common Uses: The therapeutic properties of Coriander Essential Oil include being analgesic, aphrodisiac, antispasmodic, carminative, depurative, deodorant, digestive, carminative, fungicidal, revitalizing, stimulant and stomachic. Coriander Oil can be useful to refresh and awake the mind. It can be used for mental fatigue, migraine pain, tension and nervous weakness. This oil’s warming effect is also helpful for alleviating pain such as rheumatism, arthritis and muscle spasms. There are some indications that it can also be useful in combating colds and flu.
Strength of Aroma: Medium
Aromatic Scent: Coriander Oil has a sweet, spicy, slightly fruity, herbaceous warm smell. It has been claimed by some aromatherapists that the aroma improves if allowed to age.
History: The Egyptians used Coriander seeds as an aphrodisiac. The Romans and Greeks used the seeds to flavor their wines and in India the seeds are used in their cooking. Coriander seeds were even found in the tomb of Tutankhamun. The Carmelite order in France used Coriander seeds to flavor their 17th century eau de toilette and it is still used in Chartreuse and Benedictine liqueurs.
Cautions: Avoid use during pregnancy.
Coriander, the herb of happiness
When I open the bottle a sharp, astringent scent punches out and fills the room. “This isn’t coriander!” I think. The aha moment comes when I realize it may be cilantro – the other part of the plant. I enjoy using coriander seed essential oil in perfumes and have had a couple of bottles of the essential oil that aged nicely to develop a lovely, sweet woody scent reminiscent of rosewood, thanks to the linalool that is present, up to 70% of the essential oil. Smaller percentages of components like thujene, pinene, terpinene and limonene contribute a sharp, herbal and lemony smell and add character as the oil ages. I can smell these in my new coriander supply currently aging on my shelf. Unripe seeds have a higher percentage of aldehydes including trans-2-decenal and decanal that likely add a sharp smell and are responsible for the fresh taste of the leaf, cilantro. The aldehyde C-11 or undecanal is also present in the leaves and is used in perfumes to provide a clean smell. The seeds when immature may smell strongly and be unpleasant but as they age the smell becomes citrusy, woody, spicy and complex. The taste also mellows in older seeds.
Coriander may be one of the oldest flavorings in the world, both seed and leaf. Ancient Egyptians used to bruise the seeds and mix it into their bread. The greens are one of the bitter herbs mentioned in the Bible to be used for Passover. Coriander has been used by the Chinese as a love potion and more recently finds a place in many of the world’s cuisines and all parts are used including the root. Many know the leaves as cilantro and enjoy the spicy citrus taste this herb adds to a variety of foods. Some people, however, detect an unpleasant soapy odor and strongly dislike the herb. Julia Child has been reported to say that she would pluck out any cilantro in her food and throw it on the floor. Distaste for cilantro may be genetic or it may be learned or a combination of both. Like many herbs and spices, coriander is known to be an antioxidant and anti-bacterial and may assist digestion. It is in the carrot/parsley family.
I like how I can get spice and wood from this lovely oil and how it tames cinnamon, if only a little bit. It also provides lift in heavy floral perfumes and is often found paired with rose or jasmine. Coriander was used in Carmelite water by fourteenth century nuns and in Eau de Carmes cologne – a Paris favorite for many years. With a little bit of rose geranium or palmarosa it may be used as a substitute for endangered rosewood in some blends.-from; http://bellyflowers.blogspot.com/2011/03/coriander-herb-of-happiness.html