Lemongrass Recipes

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Vietnamese Tofu Stuffed Betel Leaves  Recipe

Tàu hũ cuốn lá lốt (betel leaf wrapped tofu in Vietnamese) is very similar looking to Greek dolmades. Instead of using grape leaves though, betel leaves serve as the packaging and delivery device for pan-fried tofu and vegetables. Betel leaves have a peppery taste, and when cooked they have the appearance, but not the texture of nori. The tofu mixture is similar to the filling I use for my vegetarian egg rolls.

The traditional way to prepare this dish is with extra lean ground beef (see tips), called thịt bò nướng lá lốt. However, Aunt Elise, who is a vegetarian, is visiting from Vietnam and taught me how to make the meatless version of the dish. Either way, it's an exotic and authentic taste of Vietnam.


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Dried Apricot and Carrot Salad on Betel Leaves Recipe

Lulu's aunt, Sara, gave Daddy a betel leaf plant a few months ago. It has grown from a small vine into a prolific producer of fragrant leaves. Daddy loves chewing areca nuts wrapped in a betel leaf. It's very popular in India (paan parag) as well as Vietnam (trầu). In much of Southeast Asia, betel leaves are used to make a salad.

For the shredded carrot salad I made today, I decided to use the fresh betel leaves as a serving dish of sorts. To the shredded carrots, I added diced dried apricots and a fresh, thinly shredded kaffir lime leaf. The combination of the ingredients worked very well together. Betel leaves have a peppery taste and the kaffir lime has a nice citrus-y aroma. In keeping with the Asian theme, I made a peanut and tamarind dressing to brighten up the dish and tie all the flavors together.

Edible Betel leaves Picture


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Black Bean and Lemongrass Cod a la Hong Kong Recipe

I love seafood. I don't cook a lot of fish at home because of all the complaints from the vegetarians in the house but I couldn't resist: there was some very fresh lingcod at the market today.

Preparing black bean and lemongrass lingcod à la Hong Kong is easier than it seems; I simply marinated the fish with some lemongrass from the garden, some fresh ginger and black bean sauce. I then wrapped the whole fish en papillote, which means that I created a steam chamber out of aluminum foil for the fish. When it was ready, I served it with some steamed jasmin rice. The fish would also go well with red rice and mixed vegetables, if you're more health conscious. 


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Lemongrass Tofu Recipe

Lemongrass Tofu

02.20.09 by Jackie

Lemongrass is very common in Vietnamese cuisine. It is considered as a mild diuretic, tonic and stimulant. It's very fibrous so lemongrass needs to be finely chopped.

This particular recipe combines lemongrass with fried tofu.

Lemongrass is quite expensive in stores and it sold by bulk of 5 stalks. It's a perennial. I asked my husband about it and he started to grow 4 "bushes" last year and we keep getting some, which is very convenient.


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Tom Yum Paste Recipe

Tom Yum Paste

01.24.09 by Jackie

Tom Yum paste brings a very nice Asian fragance and a nice kick to your soup. I typically use it for making hot and sour soup and Thai soup. Enjoy!


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