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18) My three fragrant friends better than my perfume

26 Comments


my three fragrance friends 01

This Laksa leaf (polygonum odoratum) is one of the strong flavored among herb-plant species.  Traditionally, it is a must to enhance laksa with it.  Topping with this leaf makes this Singapore/Malaysia curry soup more wonderfully complete!  Local delight “cereal crab” comes with these amazing leaves upgrade your taste bud to another level.

 This is another popular fragrant herb, popularly found in Vietnamese spring rolls, salads and their local cuisine.  In Thailand, most of their cuisine can’t do away with this well-liked fragrant plant, it is eaten raw or with spicy dips.

my three fragrance friends 02

This is Lemon grass (cymbopogon citratus).  When we mention about Thai curry or soups, we have to tag him along as well.  The slender leaves with hairy and sharp edges, gives off a refreshing lemony fragrance one can’t forget.  Lower parts of the stems are more commonly used in cooking or making drinks.  It is commonly used in Vietnamese salads and spring rolls too.

my three fragrance friends 03

This is Mugwort (artemisia vulgaris), commonly used in Japan/Korea for their festive rice cake.  It gives the rice a greenish green.  Aromatic mugwort are used as a cheaper alternative for tobacco too.  It was used as a magical agent, protecting traveler against evil spirits and harmful animals in the Middle Ages.  It is also an insect repellent, repelling insects like moth.

 For some, these herbs are better than their perfume!

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Author: Sydney Fong

Hi, I am Sydney, a Singaporean. Making a living as an Architectural Illustrator, visionary. My blog entails categories of my interest, joy, upheaval of life and its destiny. Every post has its own characteristic. It conveys a story of its own, and the life of its owner.

26 thoughts on “18) My three fragrant friends better than my perfume

  1. I love lemongrass and I love the food from your part of the world, Sydney!

  2. I miss home-made Laksa sauce in which they put a lot of Laksa leaves. The store bought sauce just does not taste as good.

  3. Sydney, thank you for the images and the comparison. It’s important to know what these plants look like. To southerners, Mugwort has been traditionally used for a typical food during the Chinese Tomb Sweeping Festival too.

  4. I love all the cuisines these greens are used in. What about Thai basil or cilantro?

    • Basil is one of the mint specis, it has a given name “九层塔“in chinese culture, it means nine layer of Pagoda.
      The name arises from the growing shape. It is very popular in Western and Asia cuisine.
      For Cilantro/Chinese Parsley it has strong odor and is widely used in Asian cooking as well as Mexican. If you top it up on the fired kechup prawn, I tell you, you never forget him!

  5. Sydney
    Thanks for visiting. All the best to you.

  6. Hi- Just wanted to let you know that I nominated your work for “Blog of the Year 2012!” http://fictionalmachines.com/2013/01/13/blog-of-the-year-2012-two/ Keep up the great work & have a great one!

  7. That’s nice! Sometimes I like to pick a leaf and keep it inside a book or diary. Then after some time the pages smell good! Better than perfume ;)

  8. I am going to put a sprig of each of your friends in my hair when we are out Dancing Cheek to Cheek.

  9. I love lemon grass, mint and rosemary! :D

  10. Pure Greenery , lemon grass I love emm. try it with Tea it’s Awesome :D

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