With an unmistakable citrus-floral flavor, this woody ingredient—often found in Thai curries and Vietnamese dishes—may confuse the heck out of many home cooks. But it can play a regular role in soups, sauces, and cocktails if you stick with these easy ideas. 

How to Buy

You can find fresh lemongrass at Asian markets and at some well-stocked grocery stores, too. Look for firm, light green stalks with a faint lemony scent. Store in the refrigerator, tightly wrapped in plastic, for up to 2 weeks, or stash prepped pieces in a plastic bag in the freezer for up to 6 months.

How to Prep

First, trim off the dry ends. Make a slit down the length of the stalk with your chef’s knife and peel away the tough outer layers as you would with a scallion.

Recipes by Paige Grandjean

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