Combava powder - Madagascar

David Vanille's opinion: The citrus star of Creole and Asian cuisine, still too little known in Europe and which deserves to find its place in your kitchen. In a salty or sweet combination, Combava will be the fireworks display that will bring all your taste buds together. Discover it, taste it, and you will adopt it!

Food pairing: Chocolate desserts, fruit salad, white meats, fish, arranged rum.

Packaging: 25 gr
Other names: Combawa, cumbava, cumbaba, makrut, kaffir lime
Origin - Plantations : Madagascar

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3,90 €

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    This particular flavour of your cousin's dessert last week aroused your curiosity. What ingredient could hide behind these citrus aromas that you yourself had trouble finding between lemon, lemongrass and yuzu..... As your cousin knows your stubbornness, she quickly told you her secret: since her stay on Reunion Island, she discovered and became a fan of Combava powder! From comba what???..................................................................................... Combava (or Combawa if you wish). Let me give you some explanations about this citrus fruit that will surprise and seduce you.

    Combava (or Combawa) is a citrus fruit with appearances similar to bergamot and lime, with a bumpy rind and a diameter between 4 and 6 mm. But don't trust its similarities because its taste is very different from that of bergamot and much more acidic than that of lime.

    This fruit originates from Sumbawa Island (an Indonesian island located east of Bali in the Moluccan Sea) and grows on a tree with small leaves and thorny branches, bearing the same name.

    Nowadays, it is mainly grown in Southeast Asian countries such as Thailand and India, but also on Reunion Island and Madagascar. Combava being a not very hardy fruit, it is hardly cultivated in Europe. The fruit is harvested when it is still dark green between March and April.

    You can eat the leaves but also the zest of the Combava. Moreover, because of its rarity, the Combava fruit was still quite expensive until about ten years ago, in fact, most of its leaves were consumed. Today, as its culture develops, it is more accessible to taste the zest of this wonderful citrus fruit. The flesh, on the other hand, is hardly used, except on Reunion Island where it is used to add an extra acidic touch to dishes and drinks.

    While this citrus fruit is one of the stars of Creole and Asian cuisine, it has only just begun to make a name for itself in Europe, especially since the highly publicised English chef Jamie Oliver used it to prepare a delicious "Green curry".



    In traditional Creole cuisine, we use both the leaves and the zest and even the flesh (although very powerful in aroma) of the Combava.

    I suggest you discover the zest of this citrus fruit in the form of a pastel yellow powder, which will allow you a precise dosage when you integrate it into your preparations.

    Do not rely on the softness evoked by the colour of this powder because its organoleptic power will seize you as soon as the fresh bag is opened.

    The first aromatic evocation you will receive when you smell the Combava powder will certainly be that of lemongrass with a fairly sweet herbaceous freshness.

    On the palate, you will find both lemongrass notes and new sensations such as this bitterness, which strongly recalls the flavours of yuzu combined with those of ginger and coriander.

    Combava is used almost daily in Asian and Creole cuisine to rebalance dishes with very spicy flavours. But it is necessary to be very careful with the dosage of this condiment so that its rich aromas do not extinguish those of the ingredients it should enhance.

    Discover the different ways to use this citrus powder that will certainly not leave you indifferent.


    If Combava is the star condiment of the Indian Ocean regions, it is nevertheless an excellent surprise guest in your traditional cuisine. You are sure to hit the nail on the head with this amazing citrus fruit.

    Season your meat, fish and shellfish :

    Traditionally, Combava is used in Creole cuisine to prepare carris (especially chicken), samoussas, typical Reunion Island and Malagasy sausages such as corks, pâtés, stuffings or any type of sausage. You can therefore integrate it into the preparation of your white meats such as Pork Filet Mignon, Roast Veal or, in the manner of Chef Anne-Sophie Pic, in a smoked and roasted Farm Pigeon of the Drôme, coloured chard, turnips early with Combava lemon.

    The Combava will also allow you to prepare all your meat dishes with sweet and sour sauce or chutneys

    We usually press a lemon over our fish and other seafood products... what if this acidity comes from a new ingredient? While in the countries bathed by the Indian Ocean and in the countries of South-East Asia, there are many recipes using Combava to give a very special flavour to fish and shellfish, such as sousi pa gnon (fish curry, coconut and combava, from Laos), or amok (fish in Thai sauce), it can also be used in more European dishes. Thus, you can prepare a delicious Dos de Bar au Combava, a Carri au Cabillaud et Combava, or a Filet de Sandre au beurre blanc et Combava. On the shellfish side, it is also ideal for seasoning your prawns, shrimps or even delicious pan-fried scallops.

    To boost your vegetables and starchy foods :

    Combava will bring a sparkling touch to all your vegetable and starchy dishes. To avoid false notes: use it sparingly and avoid associating it with aromatic herbs or spices with vegetable notes.

    Sprinkle over a Summer Salad, such as a Bean Feta Salad, to prolong the feeling of freshness. Your vegetable stir-fries will deliver original flavours after being highlighted by the Combava, which will bring them lemony notes. Combava will also serve as a natural flavour enhancer in all your soups and soups. It will be the ideal condiment if you prepare basmati rice with white fish or prawns.

    For your desserts :

    Whether they are made with fruit or chocolate, your desserts will be sparkling when in contact with the Combava.

    Rediscover the flavours of a Fruit Salad flavoured with Combava, or a magnificent Lemon Pie (or a Combawa Lemon Cake that Cyril Lignac really liked in a famous cooking show). Chef Arnaud Donckele suggests a delicious Soufflé Pomme Verte and Rhubarb in which he integrates Combava..

    As for the chocolate-combava association, it's a real winning duo! Whether it's a fondant, a pound cake or chocolate muffins... Le Combava will bring him that fresh and tangy touch that we don't expect but that quickly seduces.

    The Combava is also :

    If Combava is a typical ingredient in Creole and Asian cuisine, it has also found a place in liquid preparations. Thus, you can use a pinch of Combava when preparing your arranged rums, ti punch or use it when designing cocktails in combination or as a replacement for lemon*.

    *Alcohol abuse is dangerous for your health, consume in moderation.


    The Combava is an ancient citrus fruit from Indonesia. It was the great French botanist Pierre Poivre who introduced this plant to Mauritius at the end of the 18th century. Then he will have them integrated into the Montpellier botanical garden. The vernacular name Mauritius papeda was given by the Swiss botanist De Candolle in 1824.

    Its name is only mentioned belatedly in English texts under the name of kaffir lime (name now abandoned because it would be translated as "lemon of the infidel"), in 1914, whereas its existence in Reunion Island is mentioned since it was introduced there. Moreover, during the Colonial Exhibition, Combava liqueur was sent by Reunion Island.


    Combava has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years, particularly to treat lung diseases and stomach aches.

    Combava is said to have antibacterial and fungicidal benefits (its essential oil helps to fight against the proliferation of staphylococcus aureus, streptococcus and has benefits in the treatment of acne).

    With a high vitamin C content, it is easy to deduce that this fruit has high antioxidant capacities.

    Combava's ability to reduce the hepatotoxicity of paracetamol has recently been discovered.

    Combava also preserves the nervous system by being both a tonic and a sedative. It helps to fight against stress, insomnia and chronic fatigue.

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    5 /5

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    Sylvie R. published the 11/09/2019 following an order made on 05/09/2019


    Très gouteuse.

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    Benoit D. published the 11/09/2019 following an order made on 04/09/2019



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