Lemongrass leaf tea From vietworldkitchen.com “Cut the fresh leaves from the garden (as much you care to), wash them up, cut them into small pieces about 1 to 1 1/2 inches long and keep in the refrigerator in a plastic container. Whenever you like to make a tea, just take about 25 to 30 pieces, put in a traveler’s mug or a tea pot, pour in boil water and steep for 15 minutes. You’ll have a very green lemon grass tea. Take it any time or after dinner with a little sugar if you like. It's very helpful for health.”
Coconut Curry with Lots of Veggies 1 bunch of scallions, sliced 1 bok choy, stems separated, washed, and quartered lengthwise 2 to 3 medium turnips, greens removed (can be cooked with the bok choy), washed and quartered 1 Eggplant, cut into ½ inch cubes 2 to 3 Sweet Peppers, chopped 1 garlic clove, finely chopped 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 can of coconut milk 1 stalk of lemongrass or 1 tsp. dried Red curry paste to taste Salt and pepper to taste
Over medium heat, sauté the turnips, eggplant, and sweet peppers about cook 5 minutes. Add the bok choy and minced garlic.
In a small pot combine the coconut milk, lemongrass, ginger, and add the red curry paste a little bit at a time until the desired flavor is reached. Allow to simmer for 10 or 15 minutes, then strain and add this to the vegetables. Serve over buckwheat soba noodles and top with scallions and toasted sesame seeds.
*You can add mushrooms to this recipe; cook them along with the turnips, eggplant, and sweet peppers.
1 ¾ pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs, or chicken tenders 2 lemongrass stalks ¼ cup fish sauce 4 garlic cloves, crushed 2 ½ tablespoons superfine sugar, to taste 2 red chiles, halved, seeded, and shredded, divided 2 tablespoons peanut or sunflower oil (or other oil of your choice) 1 onion, halved, cut into slim crescent moon-shaped slices ½ cup chicken stock Juice of ½ to 1 lime, plus extra if needed 2 tablespoons cilantro leaves, to serve (optional) ½ tablespoon sesame seeds, to serve (optional)
Trim any fat from the thighs and cut the flesh into bite-sized pieces. Remove the tough outer layers of the lemongrass and trim the top and base. Mince the rest—the softer part of the lemongrass—as finely as you can. Put half of the minced lemongrass into a bowl with the fish sauce, garlic, sugar, half of the chiles, and the chopped chicken. Mix together with your hands, cover with plastic wrap, and put into the fridge. Let marinate for at least 4 hours; overnight is even better. Bring the chicken to room temperature before cooking. Heat the oil in a wide-based saucepan or a wok set over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook on all sides, getting a really good color all over it. Add the reserved chiles, reserved lemongrass, and the onion and stir-fry until the onion starts to soften. Be careful not to burn the chiles or the lemongrass. Pour in the stock, reduce the heat, and cover. Cook the chicken for about 5 minutes. Remove the lid, increase the heat, and continue to cook until the liquid is reduced. You want a mixture that is wetter than a stir-fry but drier than a braise. Add lime juice to taste, then check for seasoning and sweet-sour balance, adjusting with sugar and lime. Scatter with the amaranth or cilantro leaves and sesame seeds, if using, and serve with brown rice and stir-fried greens.
Shrimp Soup with Coconut Milk and Ginger From Nong’s Thai Kitchen by Nongkran Daks and Alexandra Greeley Serves 4 to 6 *this is one of our favorite soups!
2 cups coconut milk 2 cups chicken stock or water ½ pound fresh mushrooms, thinly sliced ½ pound shrimp, shelled and deveined
First seasonings: 2 stalks lemongrass, crushed and cut into 2-inch long pieces Twelve 1/8-inch-thick slices ginger 3 kaffir lime leaves, torn into small pieces 2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed 1 teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Second seasonings: 2 fresh green chiles, sliced (optional) 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice 2 tablespoons fish sauce 1 green onion (scallion), thinly sliced 1 sprig fresh cilantro, finely chopped Combine the coconut milk, chicken stock, and first seasonings in a large stockpot and bring to a boil over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and cook for 3 to 5 minutes. Add the shrimp and cook for 2 to 3 minutes more, stirring once or twice to prevent curdling. Just before serving, stir the second seasonings into the soup and ladle into individual serving bowls. Serve hot.