Citrus Surprise

Lemon leaves may not be a cooking ingredient as familiar to Americans as they are to Italians, but that's our loss.

When fresh and young, lemon leaves have a bright flavor and aroma reminiscent of those of kaffir lime leaves. Besides using them in the recipes for Grilled Chicken With Lemon Leaves and Mozzarella Grilled With Lemon Leaves, try adding thinly cut leaves to soups or salads, folding them into fresh cheeses, or steeping them in hot water to make a refreshing tea. Lemon leaves, which can sometimes be found at grocery stores still attached to the fruit, lose their aroma and taste quickly, so look for those that that are glossy, relatively flat (very curled edges are a sign of age), deep green, and intensely citrusy smelling.