Living in Consciousness ~ Indi(r)a’s Food and Garden Weblog

Lemon Grass and Curry Leaves ~ Fragrant Fried Rice

Sliced Rings of Lemon Grass

I have been cooking with lemon grass a lot lately. Thanks to the strong presence of fresh seasonal produce from Asia, I can buy almost all kinds of vibrant looking vegetables readily here in Seattle. That includes fresh curry leaves and also herbs like lemon grass etc.

Prepping the lemon grass for cooking is easy. For the supermarket variety, cut and remove upper two thirds of dried out green grass/stalk. Lower part, the white bulbous portion is what we want. Make a shallow cut lengthwise in the middle of bulbous portion and remove at least two fibrous, woodsy looking outer layers. That would reveal a pale pinkish-white, citrus smelling lemon grass root. Finely slice the root into thin rings or pound in a mortar to a coarse paste. The soothing, refreshing lemony aroma is what makes this herb so special to me and I have been adding it to tea, rasam, and sambar and also to flavor the rice, mainly in stir-fried rice recipes.

Stir-fried brown basmati rice from India with crisp tasting sugar snap peas and green beans, liberally flavored with lemon grass and curry leaves – this recipe has become the most frequently prepared rice in our home for the past few weeks. It is easy to put together, makes use of spring vegetables that snap, and filled with lots of flavor. Scrambled paneer, tofu or eggs adds the protein component and makes this a complete meal for us.

Lemon Grass, Curry Leaves, Ginger, Fresh Red Chilli, Green Beans and Sugar Snap Peas

Cook 2 cups of brown basmati in 4 cups of water to tender. Cool to room temperature. ( Brown basmati offers a certain chewiness and richness of flavor. Cold rice makes better fried rice.)

Meanwhile prep the ingredients.

Cut fresh green beans and tender sugar snap peapods – quarter cup each
Finely slice Lemon grass and curry leaves – about 3 tablespoons each
Finely chop fresh red chillies- about a tablespoon
Grate fresh ginger -1 tablespoon
Grate fresh coconut – 4 tablespoons

Heat a tablespoon of oil in a wide skillet on high heat. One by one add the ingredients listed above in the order mentioned and stir-fry few minutes each. Add the cooked rice. Sprinkle a pinch of sugar and a teaspoon of salt. If you want you can also add little bit of soy sauce and chilli sauce at this stage along with scrambled paneer/tofu/egg. Stir well for a minute or two. Finish by adding some lemon juice and serve. Fragrant fried rice would be ready.

Fragrant Fried Rice with Lemon Grass and Curry Leaves

Recipe Notes:
Brown basmati avialable in most Indian grocery shops here in US.
I’ve purposely avoided adding onions/shallots, not to clash with lemon grass and curry leaves. This is a very adaptable recipe, experiment with different fresh vegetables like bell peppers, zucchini etc.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Biyyamu (Rice),Brown Basmati,Karivepaaku(Curry Leaf),Sera (Lemon Grass) (Monday May 7, 2007 at 5:04 pm- permalink)
Comments (23)

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23 comments for Lemon Grass and Curry Leaves ~ Fragrant Fried Rice »

  1. Looks Yum!!

    Comment by K 3 — May 7, 2007 @ 5:23 pm

  2. looks great! i have to try this . i’m a fan of brown rice! Good to see you back,Indira.

    Comment by Deepika Saripalli — May 7, 2007 @ 5:30 pm

  3. This is really very nice Indira, looks very good!

    Comment by Roopa — May 7, 2007 @ 5:57 pm

  4. Though I am hesitant to try new ingredients, you inspire me to adapt them to our own style of cooking. Will look for this next time in the supermarkets.Thanks for sharing!

    Comment by Lakshmiammal — May 7, 2007 @ 6:25 pm

  5. Brown rice and lemon grass= WOW!

    totally my kind of pulaav this is 🙂

    Comment by musical — May 7, 2007 @ 6:40 pm

  6. This is really very nice recipe.

    Comment by Chinni — May 7, 2007 @ 7:27 pm

  7. never tried with lemon grass
    rice looks yum 🙂

    Comment by anusharaji — May 7, 2007 @ 7:41 pm

  8. Pretty as usual 🙂
    I put a bit of lemon grass and sometime’s ginger in boiling hot water and mix it up with honey once I pour it into my cup. It’s great for the cold cold winters. Hope things have been going well for you!

    Comment by sushma — May 7, 2007 @ 8:16 pm

  9. Indira,


    I use lemon grass for most of the spicy curries – especially for meat dishes and fish curries.
    I shall try this fried rice Indira. Thanks!


    Comment by Mathy Kandasamy — May 7, 2007 @ 8:48 pm

  10. That’s a lovely recipe. i don’t know how you think of these wonderful and healthy recipes!I have lemon grass in my garden but i don’t use it for anything except tea!now i know where i can use it!thanks.

    Comment by madhuli — May 7, 2007 @ 8:52 pm

  11. Wow !! Brown rice, Beans, snap peas & lemon grass !!!!! Can it get any healthier ??

    Comment by Revathi — May 7, 2007 @ 10:01 pm

  12. I just love the smell of the Lemon Grass……I had seen it in the Asian stores, but never thought of making anything with it….thanks to you,I can…and also, thanks for pointing out the tip of onions/shallots. Knowing me, that’s the first thing I would have added. 🙂


    Comment by Trupti — May 8, 2007 @ 8:25 am

  13. i tried readymade lemon grass paste once and some what didn’t like it. since then i have been hesistant to use it. may be i used little more than required. ur post really tempt me to try this dish indira.

    Comment by sia — May 8, 2007 @ 8:49 am

  14. I never thought to make fried rice with lemongrass! I grow lemongrass so I will definitely try this recipe. Thank you!

    Comment by Steamy Kitchen — May 8, 2007 @ 10:08 am

  15. I make a similar dish without the lemon grass which I was planning to post soon :). Thinking of it, lemon grass would be a wonderful addition with a citrus-y flavour.

    Comment by Suganya — May 8, 2007 @ 11:12 am

  16. Hi Indira,
    I bet that’s one flavorful dish! I have a question on cooking brown rice – I never seem to get it right, it’s either too dry and undercooked or mushy and overdone. How do you determine the right amount of water to use or is there a fail-safe method to cook brown rice? I’ve tried rice-cooker and stove top method but the perfect brown rice eludes me.

    Comment by Mamatha — May 8, 2007 @ 1:32 pm

  17. I meant mushy and starchy.

    Comment by Mamatha — May 8, 2007 @ 1:35 pm

  18. Hi all, great to see such enthusiastic response to this recipe and thanks for your kind notes.

    Hi Mamatha,
    Brown basmati is the only brown rice I have cooked at home so far. For brown basmati – 2 cups rice, 4 cups of water. Cook on medium heat on stove-top (no pressure cooker). Just before when it is done, sprinkle about 2 tablespoons of water on the top. Mix once, turn off the heat and cover and let it steam. This method works for me.
    If you try this method, please let me know the results. Thanks Mamatha.

    Comment by Indira — May 8, 2007 @ 10:05 pm

  19. That’s one lovely dish Indira. I somehow am not able to get full flavor of lemon grass when I cook it, shall try your way of cutting

    Comment by sandeepa — May 9, 2007 @ 11:11 am

  20. Dear Indiraji,

    I came to know about your blog through Trupti’s “thespicewholovedme” blog. I am just thrilled to see all the creativity and details of each and every culinary ingredients. I loved the recipe for the Stuffed bringal curry, also the information on Rosematta rice. And lot more recipes which I intend to make some day. I also have my blog “”, I have tried to posting healthy vegetarian recipes. Do visit,I will be motivated and inspired if you did. Once again must say a fantastic blog.

    Comment by Pintoo — May 27, 2007 @ 9:31 am

  21. I wanted to visit ‘thespicewholovedme’ blog. Can anyone sent me an invitation for this blog I really likes Trupti’s recipes.



    Comment by AVISI — January 26, 2008 @ 3:46 pm

  22. Your recipes all look and sound great!

    To avoid waste, you can use the top and outside parts of lemon grass to make a very nice tea. Just bruise them a little, put them in a pot, pour over boiling water and steep for about 10 minutes. Good with a little sugar or honey.

    Comment by Gerard — March 7, 2009 @ 7:27 pm

  23. its ultimate

    Comment by Ac Repair jaipur — March 10, 2018 @ 2:19 am

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