A key ingredient (herb) used mostly in the Southern Caribbean as well in Latin and Asian cuisine, Chadon beni is very similar in flavor to cilantro (coriander) but much more pungent. Used primarily in marinating meats and in pickles, it can be a bit overpowering so a little goes a long way. Chadon Beni is also a key ingredient in Caribbean Green Seasoning and when finely diced can be an excellent topping to finish off any curry dish.
This herb has a multitude of alternate names, which adds to the confusion for many cooks. Formally, chadon beni is known as Eryngium foetidum, but it is also known by bhandhanya, fitweed, long coriander, false cilantro, culantro, recao, shado beni, sawtooth, spiritweed, ngo gai, ketumbar java, Mexican coriander, donnia, and spiritweed, among many other names. This profusion of alternate titles is especially frustrating for cooks who try to work with ethnic recipes, as many people are unaware of alternate names for the herb.
Here’s a quick video I did explaining what Chadon beni is, how to shop for it and where to shop for it:
If you’re looking for recipes using Chadon beni, check out CaribbeanPot.com