Under control…

I plant a lot of stuff in my garden that we can use in our cooking.

Of course, we can always go out and buy but they sell, for instance, serai (lemon grass) tied in a bundle for RM2.00 and we may use 2 or 3 stalks only and the rest would be thrown away. It is the same when we buy spring onions, RM2.00 and we can only use so much – keeping the rest in the fridge doesn’t help much. It will wither pretty fast and has to be discarded very soon…and don’t ask me how much they are selling pandan leaves for. I wouldn’t know because I never buy those – I have a lot more in my garden than we can use.

One thing that I did not plant was lengkuas (galangal) and I had a very good reason for that. When we bought our house, the previous owner had it in the backyard and it was growing out of control, even under the fence into my neighbour’s compound. I had to get some people to come to dig it all out, roots and all, to throw away so it would never ever grow again.

Usually, my missus would buy, say, RM2.00 worth, for use and store the rest in the freezer so she could have it as and when needed. We do not use a lot of lengkuas in our cooking, just a bit will do as the strong smell can be quite overpowering. It so happened that the other day, she had run out of it and she had not gone out to buy more so she asked me if I had any in the one that I planted.

Yes, I have it in a pot…

My lengkuas

I planted it when my neighbour harvested his and gave me some and I saw a chunk that was already sprouting. I planted it in a small pot and it grew and grew so I transplanted it into a bigger pot. No, I shall not plant it in the ground as this way, I can keep it under control but perhaps, I should transfer it to be a bigger pot so there may be a lot more beneath the soil.

There are supposed to be a lot more leaves than that but because the pot is so small and the stems grow so straight and so tall, everytime there is a strong wind, it would topple over. Trimming away the leaves seems to help.

So, that day, when my missus asked for it, I went to dig and see and yes, there was a lot! I just cut a chunk for her to use and then I went to get a few big fat stalks of serai and some Thai basil leaves for her.

She needed them to cook this lovely Thai green curry…

Missus' Thai green curry

…for our meals that day.

I don’t know if it is purely psychological but it seems that using these fresh ingredients, whatever one is cooking will turn out a whole lot nicer, compared to using stuff that has been stored in the freezer for ages.

Author: suituapui

Ancient relic but very young at heart. Enjoys food and cooking...and travelling and being with friends.

8 thoughts on “Under control…”

  1. Good that you can harvest fresh vegetables and herbs from your garden. Thai green curry is my favourite.

    Yes, so convenient, saves money and nothing goes to waste.

  2. Yes. Since you use it in your cooking maybe you can consider transfer it into a bigger pot so that you can have more. 😀

    This is fine, we do not need that much but I would move it to a bigger pot or harvest and replant – when the roots take over, the plant will not grow so well.

  3. The Thai green curry looks good. The only time I need lengkuas is when I do pak lor ark, other than that I seldom use it. Is your missus using lengkuas in Thai green curry only? I do have a plant in my garden long time ago and yes, I agree that it will grow out of control if one is to plant in the ground. 5 years ago I have it chop off due to renovation of my kitchen. Now I have a small plant planted in a polysterene box.

    Yes, she uses it for her phak lor bak also. Only a bit, does not need a lot so no point buying – they always sell RM2.00 for one whole lot.

  4. the green curry looks good! Please share the recipe.

    Oh? My missus would be mighty pleased to hear that, thanks for the compliment and thanks for dropping by and commenting. Will have to wait till the next time she cooks it and I will take note of what she does.

    In the meantime, you can follow this one – there is those terung pipit (pea eggplants), very authentic, a must have for all Thai green curry…like the one at Payung here.

  5. I never grow galangal amd rarely use. If use, it would be for Hakka braised chicken or duck (lo ark). I seldom cook that.

    Your missus’ green curry looked good. Pretty authentic to me.

    Yes, looks just like Payung’s, minus the terung pipit…nicer than at the Thai places here.

    Aha!!! I knew lor ark or too kha or whatever meat is not Foochow. The ones at the stalls and shops here are so diluted and lack the taste and fragrance – no lengkuas used in the cooking, I’m sure. My missus is Cantonese Hakka.

  6. When you planted them yourself, it is indeed better, pesticides free, one thing for sure. Nice green curry there, your missus sure knows how to cook very well!

    Yes, 100% organic! We sure enjoyed the green curry that day!

  7. Oooh!! Now I am craving for Thai Green Curry. So fragrant and delicious! Some plants are like that, spread all over. I had bunga kantan in my garden some time ago but had to dig them out as they were getting out of control. They don’t grow well in pots, so I just gave up.

    Oh? Peter of Payung has a lot, uses for decor at his cafe even. Glad you mentioned this – I was thinking of getting from him to plant my own. No, thank you!!!

  8. So nice to have ingredients home grown.

    No pesticide, no chemical fertiliser, 100% safe for consumption. I wish I could be more successful with my chilies – they say the ones at the market these days are not spicy because of too much fertilisers. That’s bad!

All opinions expressed in my blog are solely my own, that is my prerogative - you may or may not agree, that is yours. To each his/her own. For food and other reviews, you may email me at sibutuapui@yahoo.com

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