Murraya koenigii, alias curry leaf

Curry leaves are indispensable in many Indian dishes, but not available in Thailand. So, spotting some fresh branches for sale at a food market in Varanasi, we took them back home to give it a try.
It worked. Two of the five branches rapidly grew into shrubs. They soon gave ample leaves for cooking and ample cuttings to grow more shrubs.
For cooking, the leaflets are torn from the rib, which immediately releases the characteristic aroma. The small white flowers that develop into shiny purple-black berries are not used for culinary purposes.

May 2015, by Karolien Bais



Plants can be equally striking for their smell or stench, their stubbornness or benevolence, their secrecy or exuberance. Whatever their features, they can make my day.
Here are some of my doozies.

Couroupita guianensis, alias cannonball tree

Amherstia nobilis, alias Pride of Burma

Dendrobium crumenatum, alias pigeon orchid

Gloriosa superba, alias juju lily

Eucharis grandiflora, alias Amazon lily

Murraya koenigii, alias curry leaf

Scadoxus multiflorus, alias blood lily

Rothmannia longiflora, alias ivory trumpet

Furcraea selloa, alias false agave

Tacca chantrieri, alias bat flower

Bauhinia pottsii, alias orchid tree