Now I'm somewhat comforted to learn that there is support for the few of us who would rather do without this garnish menace. Thanks to Larry Moran over at Sandwalk, I've learned there is a website dedicated to putting the hate on this herb from hell.
They have Haikus so you know it must be good:
Sometimes I forget...
Then it rears its ugly stench.
Please, someone kill me.
I will admit that I've used the dried spice version (technically Coriander Seed) as a spice on a few occasions, but the funky taste isn't as dominant and it has a sweeter aftertaste. I've never tasted it alone, so that might explain why I'm less hostile to it.
Some have suggested there might be genetic component involved in the perception of the taste, but it has never been established.
If you don't like the flavour of cilantro, I recommend you substitute Italian leafy parsley in a recipe instead. I've been doing that for some time and get a similar texture with an equally strong and more pleasant flavour.
Update: I just found this great piece in the Wall Street Journal.
At the annual Twins Days Festival in Twinsburg, Ohio, Dr. Wysocki and fellow researchers asked 41 pairs of identical twins and 12 pairs of fraternal twins to rate the "pleasantness" of cilantro. His scale ranged from plus 11 to minus 11, with zero indicating "neither pleasant nor unpleasant." More than 80% of the identical twins gave ratings similar to their siblings, while only 42% of the fraternal twins did -- suggesting cilantro hatred may be a genetic trait. But Dr. Wysocki cautions that he hasn't yet analyzed enough fraternal twins to draw a firm conclusion.
Dr. Wysocki contends dislike of cilantro stems from its odor, not its taste. His hypothesis is that those who don't like it are unable to detect chemicals in the leaf that are pleasing to those who like the herb.
Interesting. Maybe that's why it's fine for me to use coriander seed, unless it's chemically different.