I know I like the taste of lemongrass, but if you asked me to tell you what the plant looks like, or how to use it in recipes, until just the other day I wouldn't have had an answer.
As I looked for a fun recipe involving beef and the grill, I came across Nancie McDermott's grilled lemongrass beef in Quick & Easy Vietnamese: 75 Everyday Recipes. It looked so delicious in Caren Alpert's photo, I immediately added a couple of things to my shopping list.
When I asked my husband if he knew where I could buy fresh lemongrass -- it's not something I've noticed at the store -- he looked at me as if he thought I was kidding. As it turns out, we have plenty of lemongrass in our garden, just next to the raised plot that's currently drowning in basil (a nice problem to have, by the way, especially if you like pesto as much as we do).
For those of you who don't know how to spot the green herb, it basically looks like tall grass with green onions at the bottom. (In my photo, it's the grassy thing in the middle of the two blooming plants.) It has a pungent taste and is used commonly in fairly small amounts in Thai and Vietnamese dishes.
I won't be posting a recipe today; I have made the difficult decision to do some deep kitchen cleaning today instead. I feel this is certainly more unfortunate for me than for you readers...
Check back tomorrow for the beef recipe.
The question of the day: What's your favorite thing to grill?