#CrumbGoesGlobal / Sri Lanka / Curry Leaves
Not to be confused with the ground spice mix ‘curry powder’, curry leaves are an herb, coming from the esteemed Curry Tree - native to the foothills of the Himalayas, India, and Sri Lanka. An essential component of South Indian cooking, believe it or not, they are a part of the same family as citrus fruits, and boast extremely high levels of vitamins A, B, C, and B2, calcium, and iron.
Their glossy green leaves are very aromatic, and they have a unique flavour all their own: a citrus element, along with something else that’s hard to put your finger on - some say asafoetida (say what?), and others anise.
The leaves are valued as seasoning, usually fried along with chopped onion in the first stage of preparation, to create curries, as well as dishes such as thoran, vada, rasam and kadhi.
Available fresh at Indian markets, they freeze well - no need to defrost before cooking with them. (Avoid dried curry leaves though, which have no flavour or aroma.)
How we Use It:
For a simple side with so much personality: Sauté 10 curry leaves with 1/2 cup butter, half a diced onion, 2 crushed garlic cloves and 1 tsp cumin seeds for 5 minutes. Throw in some peeled and boiled potatoes and sauté another 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove curry leaves before serving...and enjoy!
Illustration by @spoonstudio
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