Lotus stem is popular in Oriental and Indian cuisines

Almost all the parts of the lotus plant – stem, root, flower, stalks and seeds -- are used in various cuisines. The lotus stem/root is an underwater edible rhizome of the plant. It is widely used in Oriental and Indian cuisines. It is a low calorie vegetable with phyto-nutrients, vitamins and minerals. It is also a good source of dietary fibre and Vitamin C. It even has moderate levels of B-complex vitamins, that’s supposed to have an effect on a person’s mood.

The lotus stem can be used in soups, stir fries, tempura, crisps and Indian curries. It should be thoroughly washed and cleaned before consumption.

MARINATED LOTUS STEM AND GLASS NOODLE SALAD (4 portions)

Ingredients

150 gm lotus stem (cleaned, peeled and cut into thin slices)

3 tablespoon white vinegar

3 tablespoon light soy sauce

6 teaspoon sugar

Salt (to taste)

3 teaspoon sesame oil

25 gm fresh red chillies (cut into thin pieces)

50 gm Glass Noodle (Thai rice vermicelli – soaked in warm water and drained when soft)

75 gm green mango (cut into fine juliennes)

50 gm red and yellow bell peppers (cut into fine juliennes)

25 gm fresh Thai basil leaves (torn into small pieces)

Iceberg lettuce (trimmed like cups to hold the salad)

Method: Bring a pan of water to boil, place the cleaned and cut lotus stem in it and cook for two minutes till it is cooked yet crunchy. Drain and pat dry with a cloth. Combine white vinegar, light soy sauce, sugar, salt and sesame oil in a bowl to prepare the dressing. Divide the dressing into two parts.

Toss the cooked lotus stem to one half of the dressing and leave in the refrigerator for an hour, gently rolling it over every 20 minutes.

Mix the soaked and drained glass noodles, cut red chillies, green mango juliennes, bell pepper juliennes and the basil leaves with the other half of the dressing.

Place this glass noodle salad on iceberg lettuce cups and top it with the marinated lotus stems.

Executive Chef, Taj Coromandel

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