Lemongrass is a basic ingredient for many Thai and Indian recipes such as Kahda, a herbal soup that is prepared to fight the flu. It is usually appreciated in sweet and sour soups typical of Thai cuisine, where it is paired with coconut milk, kefir, ginger and fish-based sauces. Lemongrass is therefore widely used in fish dishes and soups, but also for marinating, and goes perfectly with coriander, garlic and chili. You can also use it on white meats and legume soups, especially lentils, and can also be prepared in brine.
Lemongrass for marinating
Thanks to its fresh and citrusy flavor, lemongrass is also widely used for marinating fish and meat. It can be used in combination with coriander, garlic, coconut milk and milk or soy sauce, depending on the food that you need to marinate. The marinade should last at least an hour, better if all night, to get a better final result.
6 recipes with lemongrass
Let's now discover some ways to use lemongrass in our recipes: the thai soup, made with chicken and coconut milk, the lemongrass sauce to accompany meat and shellfish, and the lemongrass herbal tea to prepare, perhaps after a hearty meal to aid digestion.
1. Thai soup
For the preparation of a Thai soup for 4 people, pour 2 teaspoons of sesame oil into a wok, add 1 chili pepper and 2 slices of lemongrass, and cook for a couple of minutes over medium heat. Add 750 ml of chicken stock, 250 ml of coconut milk and 2 lime leaves, and cook for about 10 minutes. Then add 2 chopped chicken breasts and cook until the chicken is ready. Then add lime juice, 1 teaspoon of sugar, salt and pepper and serve with coriander leaves.
2. Lemongrass sauce
To give a fresh and citrus flavor to your meat and shellfish dishes, you can prepare this simple and tasty sauce. Slice the shallot, the lemongrass stalks, a piece of ginger, garlic and chilli pepper and brown them in a pan with extra-virgin olive oil. Then add a little water to which you have added a teaspoon of turmeric. Cook for about 5 minutes. Remove the sauce from the heat and shake it until it is soft.
3. Lentils with lemongrass
With lemongrass you can then make a delicious lentil soup. For 4 people, chop 2 onions and 2 carrots and sauté in a pan with 1/2 cup of water. Add 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, 1 stem of lemongrass and 3 cups of lentils. Cover with water or vegetable stock and cook for about 1 hour. Add 1 more finely sliced lemongrass stalk, add salt and serve with extra-virgin olive oil.
4. Chicken with lemongrass
The lemongrass chicken is a very simple recipe with a delicate flavor that you can combine with noodles or rice. For 2 people, cut 300 grams of chicken breast into small pieces and place in a bowl with a crushed garlic and a small piece of crushed ginger. Then add 1 stalk of thinly sliced lemongrass and 2 tablespoons of soy sauce. Mix everything together and let it marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour. Then cook the chicken in the pan with the extra virgin olive oil and the marinade sauce. Then add chopped coriander and serve.
5. Vietnamese fish soup
Vietnamese fish soup should be enjoyed hot with the addition of noodles. To prepare it put in a pot 1 liter of fish stock, 1 sprig of lemongrass, 1 minced garlic, 1 piece of peeled ginger and 1 red pepper. Boil for a quarter of an hour, and continue cooking over a low heat with the lid for another 15 minutes. Combine 300 grams of prawns, 2 small onions in small pieces, 3 tablespoons of fish sauce, coriander and mint. Turn off the heat and let it rest with the lid. Remove lemongrass, ginger and garlic from the soup and serve with noodles.
6. Lemongrass herbal tea
The lemongrass herbal tea, also known in the Caribbean as "Fever Grass Tea", is a simple and beneficial recipe for digestion, to regulate blood pressure and to increase the immune system. For the preparation you will need dry lemongrass. Put it to boil in hot water for a few minutes, remove the lemongrass, add 1 slice of lemon or lime and serve hot.
If you buy fresh lemongrass, choose the one with the bright green stems, and keep it in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks, in a plastic food bag. Alternatively, you can freeze it up to 6 months, maintaining its aroma and flavor intact, or dry it.