Lotus seed are the seeds of the lotus flower, they have a dry and hard shell in brown or white color. It is extensively used in the Asian cuisine and is also popular in the Chinese medicine. These seeds are usually available in shelled and dried form. They may also be available in fresh form, but it is hard to find. It may only be available locally, where there is water lotus in abundance. The fresh form of the seed is eaten raw as a snack. The fresh seed has chestnut like flavor and a soft texture with a bitter tasting germ of the seed in the center. This germ of the seed may be removed or the seed can be consumed with the bitter taste. The recipes are quite common in Asia and this item is used as an ingredient. One of the most common manner in which they are used in food is in the form of paste. The seed paste is considered as a rich ingredient in Chinese desserts. There are other uses too of this ingredient too.
History of Lotus Seed Recipes
The lotus flower has a lot of spiritual significance. The Buddhist considers this flower to be sacred. All parts of this flower are edible. The lotus seed is often used as prayer bracelet. In fact, it is also made into a wrist band in Nepal. Not just that, the traditional Chinese medicine uses this seed as a treatment for women suffering with miscarriage problems. Lotus seed is believed to have cooling effect on the system. They can energize the spleen, kidney and heart meridians. They are also used to cure diarrhea and insomnia. The medicinal value of the seed is very high and it can be germinated even after 200 years of dormancy.
Culinary Uses of the Seed of Lotus
The dried form of this seed is available in two types brown peel and white peel. The brown peel indicates that the seed was fully ripe when it was harvested. Whereas, the white peel indicates that the seed was harvested when it was fully green. Whatever, be the type or color, these dried seeds are soaked in water overnight before cooking. The seed recipes include this ingredient in the form of paste, it can also be stir fried or made into rice porridge. The lotus seed paste can be added to soups for making them thick. The whole dried seed can be broken into half and added to clear soup.
Nutritional Value of Lotus Seed Recipes
These seeds are very low in fat. However, they are high in carbohydrates and minerals. It contains sodium, potassium, calcium and phosphorous. They are also rich in protein and calories.
Storing Tips of Lotus Seeds
Lotus seed has a long shelf life. The hard and tough shell makes it easy to store this ingredient. It can be stored in a dry place for up to few months.