Curry leaf is known as kadi patta in India. It is a very popular herb in this country. Curry tree is also called sweet neem. This tree is native to the Indian subcontinent. Though this tree normally can grow upto 18 feet tall. But I have never seen this plant more than 10 feet tall. Leaves of this plant are widely used in cooking because of its strong but nice aroma. Those leaves are used to make various mouthwatering North Indian (like kadhi pakoda) as well as South Indian (like rassam, various chutneys etc) dishes. But where to get fresh curry leaves? Local market?
Of course, you can get a branch of curry leaves from a local market near you. But those are not always fresh, secondly sometimes local vegetable vendor may ask you more money for a branch of almost dried curry leaves that too not in good quality which is very unfortunate.
You can make an order online for curry leaves but again it would not be fresh curry leaves (kadi patta). Many online sellers are selling sundried curry leaves or even people vendors are selling curry leaves powder.
You can use sundried curry leaves for cooking but fresh leaves are always a better option because those leaves have a very strong aroma what makes your dish mouthwatering.
Where do you get fresh curry leaves or kadi patta?
Yea, you definitely get curry leaves from a local market near you. But the quality of those will not be always as per your expectation.
So I have a solution to this problem regarding fresh curry leaves, haha!
Then how do you get fresh curry leaves anytime throughout the year?
I have grown my own curry plants, one is in a container and another one in one ground. But the plant growing in a container is growing faster than another one. It is because of more caring & regular fertilizing.
Those two plants are more than 3 years old and reached approx 2.5 feet (the plant grown in a container) and 1.5 feet (the plant grown on the ground), haha. But the plant growing in a container got a bush shape. So I do not face any problem to harvest fresh curry leaves throughout the year.
I used an equal quantity of organic compost, garden soil and sand. But after that every year, I remove one and half inches of soil from that container and add fresh potting mix. I also apply mustard cake liquid fertilizer every fortnightly.
How to preserve curry leaves?
In case you feel your plant growth is not good and during winter you will not get enough curry leaves for your kitchen use then it is the best solution to dry & preserve your homegrown fresh curry leaves (kadi patta) for the winter.
- Harvest your homegrown fresh leaves, cut its stem and only collect its leaves
- Wash your leaves properly because you are going preserve it and consume in future, so special care is needed
- Now place it on a dry cotton cloth so that it can absorb extra water
- Now keep all curry leaves on a plate in a single layer under a shade or at a place where only one or two-hour direct sunlight can reach
- Within 2 days those leaves become dried and dark green color or light brown color, you may need one or two days more depends upon your area.
- Now keep all those leaves gently in a dry & airtight container for future usage
Health benefits of curry leaves (kadi patta)?
Well, those curry leaves are traditionally used since last many hundreds of years in India. Nowadays curry tree is commercially cultivated to meet domestic needs. Those leaves are very beneficial for our body as well as our hair.
Traditionally it is said that regular consumption of those curry leave may cure many health-related problems. It may lower cholesterol, control blood sugar level or diabetic patients. The regular consumption of those leaves can cure digestion problem too. It may be beneficial to obesity & morning uneasiness related issue. That curry leaves extracts may reduce mental stress as well as heal your wounds.
Though many people claimed such health benefits due to regular consumption of curry leaves but there is no such strong medical evidence that can prove those claims.
Not only the consumption of curry leaves is beneficial to our body but also is very good for the improvement of our hair. It may prevent hair falling & hair greying. It can nourish & repair damaged hair too.
So what do you supposed to do to get plenty of fresh curry leaves (kadi patta) regularly? Do you find any other better option than growing own curry plant in a container or backyard? Please share your thought?