One of my favorite ingredients is makrut lime. I use the leaves constantly. I would use the rind as well, but our tree hasn't put off any fruit...yet. The flavor and fragrance of this lime varietal is completely distinctive, and there isn't really a comparable substitute. So, what I'm saying is - keep your eyes peeled for the knobby little limes, and the leaves when you're shopping. Then stock up. You can freeze both for later use. And, when you do have some leaves? Get cracking on this miso soup. The base is an incredibly aromatic dynamic lime leaf broth punctuated with lemongrass, lots of garlic, ginger, and serrano chile. It's my favorite broth right now.
I use the leaves in everything! In stir-fries, rice bowls and risottos. I fry the shredded leaves in a splash of oil and toss them with toasted almonds, cashews, or peanuts. I shred them as finely as possible, and add them to leafy salads. Find them, and use them in everything. I feel like people often get hung up on just using these limes in specific recipes. Shift into using them as a favorite seasoning / flavor. I mean, even on certain sandwiches!
Last suggestion! Make this cauliflower soup, and use the lime leaf broth as the liquid - it's incredible!
Lime Leaf Miso Soup
Omit the miso, and use the straight lime leaf broth in your favorite congee or risotto recipe, or in any brothy noodle dish. It's wonderful!
8 cups water
6 makrut lime leaves, crushed crumbled
2 lemongrass stalks, trimmed and crushed
1-inch piece of ginger, peeled, cut 1/4 inch thick, smashed
1 serrano chile, stemmed, halved, seeded
6 medium cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
3-4 tablespoons miso paste
Lots of fresh lime juice
salt or soy sauce, to taste
You can make this on the stovetop, or you can make in in an Instant Pot, and I'll include instructions for both below!
- Stovetop version: Combine the water, lime leaves, lemongrass, ginger, chile, and garlic in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, and then simmer gently for 20-30 minutes. Remove from heat, strain, and stir in the miso paste. Taste, and add more seasoning if needed - salt or soy sauce will work. Finish with a generous squeeze of lime juice.
- Instant Pot version: Combine the water, lime leaves, lemongrass, ginger, chile, and garlic in your Instant Pot. Close and SEAL. Pressure cook on high for 10 minutes. Carefully quick release, gently shake or tap the pressure cooker, and THEN carefully open away from you. Stir in the miso paste. Taste, and add more seasoning if needed - salt or soy sauce will work. Finish with a generous squeeze of lime juice.
Freeze any broth you aren't going to use within a few days.
Makes 8 cups.
Prep time: 5 minutes - Cook time: 20 minutes