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Don't fear the stalk.

PHOTOGRAPHY by
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September 18, 2020
Ingredients
SERVINGS:

Originating in Sri Lankan and South Indian cuisines, the holistic properties and rich lemony flavor profile of lemongrass make for a versatile herb that we are desperate to find more uses for.

The plant’s tropical origins make it drought-friendly to grow for local gardeners, and its mild astringent properties are antibacterial.

First, Prepare the Stalk

Remove outer green leaves of lemongrass to reveal the light yellow and more tender part of the stalk. Trim the bottom 1 to 2 inches to remove the bulb and the woodier green part of the stalk and reserve for another use in a broth. Thinly slice the yellow part and finely chop or blitz in a food processor.

Lemongrass Tea

Bring 1 cup of water to a boil and steep 1- to 2-inch pieces of lemongrass for 5 minutes.

Lemongrass tea is anti-inflammatory and said to relieve symptoms like pain, bloating, and anxiety. It also reduces cholesterol while improving digestion and oral health.

Lemongrass Mocktails and Cocktails

Combine 1 cup of water, 1 cup of organic sugar, and 2 stalks of lemongrass cut into 2-inch pieces in a small saucepan.

Bring to a simmer for 10 minutes, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat, strain, and reserve a few pieces of lemongrass to store with the syrup in a jar once cooled.

Try the lemongrass syrup mixed with soda water—add a shot of gin or vodka for extra-refreshing fun.

Enriched Broths and Stocks

Use the green parts of the lemongrass stalk to brighten broths and soup stocks as bases for Asian-inspired dishes and soups, like in coconut-based curries or a simple pho dinner.

Marinade or Dipping Sauce

Make a simple marinade or dipping sauce by whisking together 1 tablespoon of avocado oil, 2 tablespoons of tamari or soy sauce, 2 tablespoons of finely chopped lemongrass, 1 tablespoon of minced ginger, 1 tablespoon of maple syrup, and a crushed clove of garlic.

Marinate slices of super firm tofu for 15 to 30 minutes before baking on a parchment-lined sheet at 400° for 25 minutes until edges are crispy. Serve the tofu on top of rice with fresh leafy greens and a drizzle of hot sauce for a quick savory meal.

Ultimate Steamer Pots

A bucket of scrubbed clams need only simmer for 5 to 10 minutes in a boiling pot of white wine, coconut milk, ginger, lemongrass, garlic, and chiles to find bliss.

ABOUT THE CONTRIBUTORS
Maria Hesse
Maria Hesse is Edible San Diego's Managing editor, a food and lifestyle designer, pug photographer at PugsMutt.com, and co-author...
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