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Kaffir lime leaves?

My green curry is just not the same without the Kaffir lime leaf aromatics. I was able to get them at Russo's for a little while, but not anymore! Has anyone seen them?

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  1. I am not from your area so cannot tell you where to buy them. But, when you do find them buy a lot because they freeze very well. They don't lose colour or taste after freezing. I just pull out what i need and it takes about 1 min. for them to thaw. Good luck in finding them.

    1. Earlier this summer (which was the last time I looked), I found them at Shalimar Food and Spices, 571 Mass. Ave. in Central Sq., Cambridge.

      1 Reply
      1. re: dsmoxie

        I went to Shalimar on Saturday and asked for kaffir lime leaves. The woman who was working told me they don't carry them. When I said that someone told me that they had bought them at Shalimar previously, she mentioned that they do carry curry leaves and that perhaps someone got the two confused. Not saying that's the case, just that apparently, if they ever did carry the lime leaves, they don't anymore.

      2. At one point, although this was a few years ago, I got them at Christina's. You have to ask them, though, since they keep them frozen. Can anyone confirm if they still carry them?

        As an aside, I've been noticing that Christina's has low turnover issues, so just a caveat emptor when buy certain goods here. I almost bought some nut oil that was past its expiration date, and I saw some Valrhona chocolate with a bloom on it (the wrapper was transparent).

        Good to know about Shalimar re kaffir lime.

        1. angkor wat market on shirley ave in revere usually has kaffir lime leaves. i have also seen them recently at some of the smaller cambodian markets in lowell

          1. If you're still looking, Christina's in Inman Sq definitely carries them frozen. I've bought them from there and they were very good quality, super fragrant.

            1. I thought I saw them along with curry leaf in the Indian markets on Moody St. in Waltham.

              1. Hey, I had the same problem- first of all I got them at Christina's but they were not brilliant as they were dried.

                BUT then I found them fresh at the Whole Foods on River Street!! They are in the herbs section in little clear plastic boxes that bay leaves etc come in. That was a while ago, but if they aren't there you could ask. I've never seen them at the Whole Foods on Prospect, btw.

                1 Reply
                1. re: K81

                  at Russo's yesterday, but yes, not with regularity.

                2. Christina's in Inman Square definitely has them. I was just there two weeks ago!

                  1. I've been able to get them at H-mart in Burlington as well.

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: AmandaRG

                      I just asked about these at Christina's the other day and they said that they had been banned. I don't feel 100% confident about this information because the young man reported that they had been banned "for years" and I see here that they were available at Christina's this past October.

                      I haven't had much luck finding more information about a ban online, hopefully because it doesn't exist! Has anyone seen any kaffir lime leaves in the Boston area recently?


                      1. re: melon

                        check with Whole Foods Fresh Pond. i've gotten from them in the past. if you find them buy some extra and keep them in the freezer.

                        1. re: melon

                          I'm pretty sure they are not banned. Places in NY carry them. See http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/770739 .

                          1. re: FoodDabbler

                            Russo's has them 75% of the time I'm there, which is 4-5 times a week.

                          2. re: melon

                            Not exactly banned but they are on "quarantine" due to a citrus disease. I've been told that they have to be sprayed if they are imported, which deters a lot of consumers

                        2. I tried to find them (didn't look at Russo's, though), but gave up and just bought a Kaffir lime tree.. give it a year or so, hopefully I'll be rolling in leaves.

                          After making Shrimp Tom Yum using real lime leaves (procured at a Vietnamese grocery in Philly), they make a difference..

                          7 Replies
                          1. re: grant.cook

                            Where did you get the tree?

                            I recently bought the freshest and cheapest kaffir lime
                            leaves I've ever seen in NYC at Eatily.

                            1. re: C. Hamster

                              Logee's in CT sells kaffir lime plants via mail order:
                              (They also have bigger plants in 4" pots for $25.)

                              I've bought other houseplants from them and always been quite happy with them.

                              1. re: Allstonian

                                It's a ways off, usually in August (?), but kaffir lime trees are also often available for sale at the SEA festival in Lowell.

                                  1. re: Allstonian

                                    Check that page again. That was the 2010 date. However it does say that it is always the third Saturday in August which would be August 20, 2011.

                                    1. re: markin617

                                      Oops - you're right, of course. Thanks for catching that.

                              2. re: C. Hamster

                                I was passing through northern CT (its not too far south of Worcester) and hit Logee's.. actually a pretty fun place to explore - beautiful, packed to the gills tropical greenhouse. Its right off Route 12 in Danielson..

                                Call ahead - they have lime trees in 2.5" and 4" pots, but their inventory may vary. Hate to have you make a drive and come up empty.

                                Actually, they have a bunch of dwarf citrus - Meyer lemon, etc. - if you wanted anything else as well.

                            2. Thanks for the info on the plants, guys

                              1. Do try using lime rind- if you cut it just below the surface trying to get the least amount of white rind, you'll cut through the cells of oil nicely- peel it like you are trying to do one peel for the whole lime- add it to the curry- keep it large and remove before serving. That is what I have been doing since importing anything citrus to FL is iffy at best- try it- a better option than most of the disheveled imports in the freezers.

                                  1. re: pgd536

                                    What location? Fresh or frozen? What section of produce or freezer?

                                    1. re: Northshoregirl

                                      I've seen them in WF in the Asian-products area, but they are brined - in a glass jar.. I have not seem them fresh or frozen in the few WF's I stop at (Dedham, Medford, Fresh Pond)

                                      1. re: Northshoregirl

                                        I got some at the Whole Foods by MGH. The were in a jar and shredded though.

                                        1. re: Northshoregirl

                                          I saw them in Andover Whole Foods in April with the fresh clamshell-packed herbs in the produce section. Haven't looked lately.

                                          1. re: corduroy

                                            you sure that wasn't bay leaves? They look similar. The Whole Foods in Medford doesn't have them...and I asked one of the guys who works there.

                                            1. re: Spike

                                              I'm positive they were Kaffir Lime Leaves. I was stockpiling them in my freezer for a while and would go all over to find them. I laughed when I saw them because they were close to home and I was driving to Chinatown and Kam Man to find them. I never even thought to look there. The package was labeled Kaffir Lime Leaves as well.

                                      2. Russo's has them fairly regularly- I'd call ahead to ask, because I doubt they're going to stop getting them altogether. Perhaps they just didn't get them in the few times that coincided with your visits?

                                        4 Replies
                                          1. re: rchudy

                                            they aren't with the other Asian "leaves" but usually on the same table with parsley, dill, basil, cilantro.

                                            1. re: Madrid

                                              Yep- also, they are in plastic containers, as are the fresh bay leaves.

                                            2. re: rchudy

                                              Sid Wainer in New Bedford carries them, I suspect its not among the items you can have shipped as a retail customer (doesn't hurt to call as they do ship some perishables like their great cheeses), so only really an option purchasing at their Gourmet Outlet (really worth a trip especially this time of year because of greens/edible flowers, etc that they stock) or placing an order through a friendly restauranteur. But they might have stronger supply relationships than some of the other ethnic and other retailers.