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Mar 17, 2012 01:53 PM

Herb/leaf ID help

I bought a green herb at the local asian grocery - and I have no clue what it is. It came wrapped in saran warp. Unrolled I have about 12 large (about the size of my hand) green leaves. They are shaped like a spade on a playing card and have a saw tooth edge and a hairy stem. My boyfriend says that it looks like a leaf from a cotton wood tree. It smells like fish a little bit.

Anyone have an idea what I might have?

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  1. Could it be Fish Mint, used in Vietnamese cuisine? Google for some pictures.... there seem to be quite a few varieties.

    1. I googled "fishy smelling leaf" and got this result: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Houttuyn... which looks like the fish mint mentioned by smtucker.

      1. I think that's it - Thank you! That would explain why I thought it was mint when I purchased it. Never thought to search by smell. Now to try it...

        2 Replies
        1. re: corneygirl

          Yeah, I first learned the trick of searching by smell when attempting to identify the ginko tree outside my apartment (a smell described by one blogger as "quite complex, and redolent of just about any foul-smelling substance or object you can think of").

          Good luck with your fish mint -- from the sounds of it, it tastes kind of fishy as well.

          1. re: BananaBirkLarsen

            Gingko looks cool, but those stupid smelly berries are awful. I am going to leave the fish mint out of tonight's salad for guests. I'll try some with the leftovers.