Lemongrass (Cympobogon citriodorum)

This perennial plant with long sharp leaves grows in leafy clumps in warm and temperate conditions. The signature ingredient in South East Asian cuisine, lemongrass is also proving increasingly popular in Western dishes.

The distinctive lemony taste is accompanied by a similar aroma that is often prominent in Thai and Malay curries. The thicker bulb end holds most of the flavour. Simply peel, crush or chop, or even add whole. Lemongrass is a surprisingly versatile component to a range of dishes as diverse as stews, curries and marinades to soups and stir-fries.