Curry leaves are an essential ingredient in many Indian & most Sri Lankan curries, and their unique aroma is one of the distinctive smells of a trip to South India. Their flavour is earthy, nutty and smoky, and it is quite strong, but they are used for their aromatic qualities as much as their taste. In fact they serve a similar purpose as bay leaves do in European cooking.
These dried leaves do not have the same intense aromas as the fresh leaves, but frying them off in a little bit of hot oil before adding other spices and ingredients will add extra depth of flavour to your dish. They are very good added to the mixture for onion bhaji or pakhoras, and are a great store cupboard addition for whenever you want to give an authentic flavour of South India to your cooking.