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BT Nguyen on Lemongrass

BT Nguyen, lemongrass

Lemongrass photo by Kang Kim

Restaurant BT is the jewel of the Tampa area’s underrated dining scene. Chef BT Nguyen’s colorful French-Vietnamese dishes often feature lemongrass, which adds a hint of citrus when used as an herb. Notes Nguyen, “Lemongrass is so versatile. It works wonderfully with everything from tofu to chicken, beef and seafood. I also use it in my desserts and as a digestive in tea.” The herb plays an important role in the chef’s signature dish, snapper a la Saigon—local snapper encrusted with lemongrass and simply grilled. —Jason Oliver Nixon

 

Lemongrass Fun Facts
Lemongrass is employed extensively in Ayurvedic medicine and is thought to help with nasal congestion and coughs.

In the Caribbean, lemongrass is known as sweet rush or fever grass.

Lemongrass is an essential ingredient in Thai cooking and can be found in such far-flung dishes as tom yum soup and Thai green curry.

Where to Get It
Lemongrass has made a splash on menus around the world. Here are a few spots to sample this ultra-versatile ingredient.

       
             
The Baur au Lac hotel in Zurich crafts a tangy Pineapple Fusion cocktail garnished with lemongrass stalks.     Lemongrass shows up in London-based Thai eatery Nahm's hot and sour soup of crispy wild sea bass.     Try the banana, lemongrass and coconut soup at Cabana Restaurant at the Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills.

 

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