Lotus stem is an all time favourite of mine. I have enjoyed the crispy fried lotus stem along with my bowl of rice in the South Indian style. The lotus stems are chopped, soaked in salt water and dried in the sun for a long shelf life. They later take their seats in the store room in my Grandmother’s old glass jars with self designs. They sit there through all the seasons awaiting their turn after Pappadom (thin round wafers), Ari kondattom (rice crispies), Pavakka kondattom (bitter gourd crispies) and Achinga kondattom (long beans crispies).
It was only much later that I got to taste this ever tempting Lotus Stem Delicacy in a popular restaurant in Pune. This crispy crunchy side dish of the lotus rhizome had me then. And every visit to the restaurant brought the sweet sour stem crispies to our table. Indian homes rarely prepare the lotus rhizome as a side dish. Whoever loves them makes them in the fashion of curries for roti, pickles and quite haphazardly, perhaps, as salads.
Lotus rhizome has a lot of health benefits to offer when not deep fried. Alas! I always had a small fist full of them dried and fried at meals. After knowing the health benefits I made a mental note to look for fresh ones in the Hyper Markets.
Health Benefits of Lotus Stem
Lotus stem is low in saturated fats, moderate in calories and high in dietary fibre. It makes a great nutritious yet unique vegetable for a weight loss seeker. It may help in constipation with its fibre content while the complex carbohydrates help lower blood sugar level. Lotus stem has high Vitamin C and Vitamin B Complex. Calcium and iron are also plentily found in lotus stem.
The antioxidant boost a lotus stem Entrée can give is immense. A recent article in the TOI said, “The root also contains essential minerals like zinc, magnesium, copper and iron, which help the body in the production of red blood cells. Lotus root is known for strengthening the respiratory system of a human body, which ultimately helps a person fight a number of diseases.” [Read More]
Do you want to try out a Lotus Stem Recipe? Enjoy this New Dish!
Lotus Stem Sabzi
1. Lotus Stems – 2
2. Onions – 2 (chopped)
3. Tomato – 3
4. Green chillies – 2-3
5. Ginger garlic paste – ½ tea spoon
6. Cumin seeds – ½ tea spoon
7. Asafetida- 1 pinch
8. Turmeric powder – ¼ tea spoon
9. Coriander powder – 1 ½ tea spoon
10. Amchur/dry mango powder- ¼ tea spoon
11. Red chili powder – ½ tea spoon
12. Garam masala – ¼ tea spoon
14. Oil – 2-3 table spoon
15. Coriander leaves (chopped)
Method of Preparation
Wash the lotus stems well. Peel the skin off once the stems are dry. Chop the stem in thin or thick slices.
For easy cooking, pressure cook them on low heat with a little salt. After two whistles, switch off the cooker. Let off the steam and open the pressure cooker. Strain the chops and set aside.
In the mixer, make a paste of tomatoes, green chillies and ginger garlic paste.
Heat oil in a pan and add asafetida to it. Add cumin seeds to splutter. Add in the powders and once they are slightly heated pour in the paste. Keep stirring until the oil shows up at the top of the mix.
Add in the boiled lotus stems and mix well. Cook for a little while with salt and garnish with coriander leaves.
It is up to you to make the gravy thick, watery, spicy or oily. 🙂 [Adapted from Kamal Kakdi Fry]
Do you cook lotus stems at home? Share your recipe with us!