If your recipe calls for the Kaffir lime leaf, you may be wondering what it is. Well, it's not just for cooking. Discover all the uses of this incredible leaf below!
Want to experience Southeast-Asian cuisine without leaving your kitchen? Add a Kaffir lime leaf to your dishes. The Kaffir lime leaf is an aromatic herb used in Thai and Southeast-Asian cuisine.
The leaf has a distinctive citrus flavor and adds a lemon-lime element to any meal. Continue reading to learn more about how you can incorporate fresh Kaffir lime leaves into your cooking.
What Are Kaffir Lime Leaves?
Kaffir leaves come from Kaffir limes. These limes are different from regular ones, as they are more bitter and have wrinkled skin. The Kaffir lime is also known as the "porcupine orange."
The leaf comes in two parts: the top leaflet, which has a pointed tip, and the bottom leaflet, which is broader with rigged edges. Here's how you remove the leaf from the stem: hold the joint between the two leaves and rip it away from the stem.
Kaffir limes are rarely eaten but used in cleaning products. The zest, however, is often used in curry pastes. The leaf can be eaten when sliced very finely or cooked.
How Are They Used?
Kaffir lime leaves are very similar to bay leaves. Whole leaves are added to dishes during the cooking process and removed before serving. The leaves can also be used as a garnish or topping.
Kaffir leaves add a stong and citrus note to dishes. They are used in recipes for fried rice, stir fry, salads, and soups. Some food lovers would say that these leaves attribute to the unique taste of curry dishes.
Preparing and Storing Kaffir Lime Leaves
To prepare the Kaffir lime leaves for cooking, remove the spine and cut them into small slivers. For faster cutting and preparation, it’s recommended to cut the leaves diagonally. Fresh leaves are ready to use in dishes while dried leaves should be ground before using.
Storing Kaffir lime leaves is easy. For fresh leaves, you can store them in freezer bags and place them in the freezer for up to 12 months. For dried herbs, they can be stored in an airtight container for the same amount of time.
Cooking with Kaffir Lime Leaves
These fragrant leaves add a lemon-lime essence to dishes so they pair well with food that requires a slightly sharp or tropical flavor. Whole leaves can be added to soups and broths to add a burst of flavor. The flavor of Kaffir lime leaves blends beautifully with basil, cilantro, cumin, ginger, coconut milk, and turmeric.
Other Benefits of Kaffir Lime Leaves
These citrusy leaves aren’t only used for cooking. Here are a few other great ways you can use Kaffir lime leaves:
If you’re looking for a non-irritating and non-toxic citrus perfume, look to Kaffir lime leaves. You can rub them on your pressure points to leave a long-lasting and fresh scent.
Kaffir lime leaves are known to ease stress and anxiety. How? Their citrus aroma stimulates smell receptors in the nose and sends messages through the nervous system, resulting in a sense of calm and well-being.
Kaffir lime is often added to shampoos. It gently cleanses the scalp without irritating it or stripping it of its natural oils. Kaffir lime juice is also said to kill lice.
Discover the Benefits of Kaffir Lime Leaf For Yourself
If you go hunting for this rare lime leaf at your local grocery store, chances are you won’t find it. Fortunately, we provide fresh and fragrant Kaffir lime leaves delivered straight from our citrus grove to your doorstep.
We also offer fast-growing Kaffir lime trees for sale if you'd like to grow your own Kaffir limes and leaves!
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