Lemon Grass (Cymbopogon Citratus), sometimes written Lemongrass, is a citrus flavoured herb from S.E.Asia, widely used in Asian cuisines. Lemon Grass is a tall perennial grass and the part used for cooking is the lower part of the stem including the bulb. Highly aromatic, Lemon Grass is used in soups, curries, and savoury dishes.
Lemon Grass stems are extremely tough. To use them you must first remove the rough outer leaf and then chop the remaining stem into small pieces. For use in Curry Pastes, the pieces of Lemon Grass should be ground using a mortar and pestle. In Thailand, Lemon Grass is also used to make a refreshing cold drink called Nam Takrai.
Lemon Grass is widely used in traditional medicine. Taken as a tea, Lemon Grass relieves headaches, fevers, and coughing and is a very good digestive aid. Lemon Grass has also been proven to reduce cholesterol levels. A few leaves of Lemon Grass placed near your bed will keep mosquitoes away while you sleep and if you are outdoors, crush a few leaves and rub them on your skin to ensure a bite free day.
One other little known “fact” about Lemon Grass is that if you wrap a few leaves of Lemon Grass with a piece of muslin and place them under your pillow it will help you to attract a lover or to keep the one you have!