CarolCooks2…Friday Food Reviews…Aromatic Leaves…Part 7…

Welcome to Friday Food Reviews, where I will cover a different food or product each week and look at… what they are.  where do they grow, what can we substitute them for in a recipe, and are they safe to eat, store, use, cook, or anything connected to that food? or product..all the why’s and the wherefores…it will, of course, be mainly my own opinion or a known fact…good or bad…there may even be a tried and tested recipe…or three… today I am looking at…Aromatic LeavesPart 7.

As many leaves that are native to other countries are now finding their way around the world either dried or frozen… I think that is great as we can widen our cooking repertoire and experience other flavours…some of which we may not like and others which may become a staple in our spice collection…

Foraging is an age-old tradition that is very prevalent here and moreso now around the world in recent years as people realise just how beneficial to our health and well-being foraged greens can be…and why waste a natural resource as food shortages hit us harder we may need to rely on foraging more often…

Foraging is also a wonderful way to explore nature, conserve ecosystems, and enrich your diet, but it is vital to know which plants are edible and which plants will send you to the emergency room and always remember to wash them thoroughly… If you are a beginner at foraging like me, it’s best to start foraging under the guidance of an experienced outdoorsman/woman with extensive knowledge of local plant life…I have my DIL and a Thai friend who are both very knowledgeable and if in doubt, let the plant be and raid your garden instead until you have the knowledge to be safe…

Cinnamon Leaves…Large leaves with a subtle scent of fine cinnamon these leaves seem to be little used and known in western cultures but are very often used in and around Asia…Cinnamon although a beautiful spice can often be the prominent flavour in a dish if we are too heavy-handed with it…whereas the leaves delicately flavour a dish and enhance rather than overpower…Some biryani or curry recipes also use cinnamon leaves…the leaves are also used to infuse the flavour into desserts, ice cream and rum…rum infused by using the gin method of vapour infusing gives a subtle flavour of cinnamon…

Jackfruit Leaves…This Jack fruit tree has been in my garden since I have lived here…we share the fruit with our neighbours and the squirrels…it has only been recently that I discovered the leaves were edible and are used in cooking

For making salads the young tender leaves are used…This tender leaf is used for preparing many dishes such as jackfruit leaf tea, salad, herb gruel, cool drinks and added to poppadoms… the ripened leaves of jackfruit are also edible as they can be dried, grounded and used for preparing ripened jackfruit leaf tea.

To prepare jackfruit leaf salad, wash the leaves well. The leaves must be blanched in boiling water with added salt for a minute. Remove from water and place in a dry and clean cloth. Once the water is removed from jackfruit leaves, chop them. In a bowl mix olive oil, lemon juice, salt, chopped onion, tomato and green chilli. Add a pinch of ground white pepper too. Then add the chopped jackfruit leaves until all the ingredients are well combined.

Lotus Leaves…even the “Hairy Bikers” use Lotus leaves …that was a turn-up for the books as they say…they used them to steam chicken…

Lotus leaves are large bright green leaves from the aquatic lotus plant. Fresh lotus leaf is sweet in taste with a hint of bitterness. Dry lotus leaves are used to add a fresh earthy tea scent to foods, most often steamed dumplings…In Thai cooking, lotus leaves are used to wrap sticky rice and fried rice.

Another famous dish using lotus leaves is Beggar’s Chicken. This dish originates, according to Asian folklore, when a beggar stole a chicken from a feudal lord. To stop the cooking odours from attracting attention, the beggar wrapped the hen in a lotus leaf and mud from the lotus pond before roasting it…

Thank you for joining me today this is the last post on aromatic leaves I hope you have been like me and discovered some leaves which are native to you and can use them in your cooking…next week I will be looking at “edible roots”…I hope to see you tomorrow for Saturday Snippets and that you have a fabulous weekend xx

18 thoughts on “CarolCooks2…Friday Food Reviews…Aromatic Leaves…Part 7…

  1. Pingback: CarolCooks2 weekly roundup…2nd- 8th October 2022-Monday Musings, Curries its National Curry Week , Health, Morbid Obesity, Aromatic Leaves…and Saturday Snippets where “Firecrackers” is my one word prompt. | Retired? No one told me!

  2. Pingback: CarolCooks2…Friday Food Reviews…Aromatic Leaves…Part 7… – MobsterTiger

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