Learn About Lotus Root

Author: Chef Sydney

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What is Lotus Root?

Lotus root is a vegetable that comes from the rootstalk of the Indian lotus flower.  Lotus root has fibrous brown skin with hard ends, a white interior, and lace-like holes throughout the center of the lotus root.  The interior texture has a starchy, juicy quality, similar to a potato, with a crunchiness when raw.  Quality lotus root feels firm and heavy with no bruises or blemishes on the skin.  Lotus root does not have much of a smell.

What Does Lotus Root Taste Like?

Lotus root has a mild, starchy flavor.  It may taste slightly sweet.

Learn About Lotus Root

How Do You Eat Lotus Root?

Eat lotus root cooked.  To prepare lotus root for cooking, peel the skin off of the root.  If you want to speed up the cooking process, cut the lotus root into thin slices.  Common ways to cook lotus root include deep-frying, stir-frying, or cooking into soups or stews.  Some recipes call for stuffed lotus root.  Soy sauce and lotus root pair well in a variety of dishes.  Lotus root also comes in the form of tea.

Where Can You Buy Lotus Root?

Look for lotus root year-round in the produce section of international grocery stores or Asian food stores.  Some Japanese food stores may also carry lotus root.  A local farmers market may carry lotus root during the fall.

How Do You Store Lotus Root?

To keep lotus root from turning brown, do not peel the lotus root before storing.  Place unpeeled lotus root in a plastic bag and store it in the refrigerator.  When stored correctly, lotus root may last for a few weeks.

Fun Facts About Lotus Root

Many people use lotus root slices as decoration because of its lace pattern.

Did You Know?

Most parts of the lotus plant are edible.

Recipes Using Lotus Root

Lotus Root Chips

Bake lotus root chips for a new favorite crunchy snack. Start with peeled and thinly sliced lotus root. Toss lotus root with olive oil, salt, pepper, and paprika. Spread in an even layer on a baking sheet and bake until crispy.

Stir-Fried Lotus Root

Create a tangy side dish to go alongside hearty meats. Start by heating olive oil in a skillet. Then, add in sliced lotus root and saute until cooked. Add in a sauce made out of soy sauce, maple syrup, vegetable broth, ginger, and red pepper flakes. Cook until sauce thickens and serve.

Lotus Root Curry

Substitute lotus root for chicken or potatoes as the star of curry. Cook lotus root and simmer in the curry sauce of your choice. Serve lotus root curry over white rice.

Stuffed Lotus Root

A popular way people enjoy their lotus root involves stuffing the slices. Most recipes begin with crispy baked or fried lotus root. Stuffings typically involve sticky rice or pork, but some people creating stuffings with sausage or beef. Serve stuffed lotus root as an appetizer.

Lotus Root Salad

Use pickled lotus root to create a tangy salad. Combine lotus root with cooked pork, boiled carrots, cilantro, cucumber, red onion, and mint.

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