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Lemongrass: It's Simply the 'Zest'!

As a great alternative to lemon zest (if not better), this spring-onion-lookalike herb packs a punch in a unique, sweet lemon aroma and flavour when its stalk is cut or bashed.

Also known as "sweet rush", lemongrass is native to the tropical regions of Asia and can be grown relatively easy at home anytime of the year. Defined by it's grey-green leaves, it makes a beautiful shrub-like plant in a container.

As for it's many culinary uses, adding this botanical to cocktails is our favourite. Lemongrass can be used, whole, sliced or made into a paste or syrup. To use it in your drink, slice up the stem (only use the bottom 7-8cm after the dry layers have been peeled and the bottom has been chopped off) and 'bruise' the pieces with the back of a spoon to release all of its flavour. Add the lemongrass to a shaker with your mix and your favourite gin from The Capital Gin range, shake, strain and enjoy! You can even top it off with a fresh lemongrass stalk and use it as a stirring stick or as a natural straw!

To use it as a syrup instead, mix equal parts sugar and water in a pot. Add half a part of lemongrass (chopped and bruised) to the mix and bring it to a simmer on low heat. Make sure all the sugar is dissolved before removing the mix from the heat. Let it cool down before straining the lemongrass and voilà! Your very own lemongrass simple syrup :-)

But why should you add this zesty herb to your drink? Well other than its citrus-y flavour, lemongrass has a lot of beneficial properties including antibacterial and anti-inflammatory effects. It can help combat digestion issues, stress and high-blood pressure. It is also a good source of iron, magnesium, and zinc. Planting this wonderful herb in your garden can also be effective as a natural mosquito and fly repellant. And who wouldn't like that?

Now that you know a bit more about this flavourful botanical and it's many benefits, why not add it to your next drink if you haven't done so already :-)

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