Braised Lotus Root - Yeon-geun-jorim
I’ve been watching Maangchi for about a year now because I've been really interested in Korean recipes. What better way to learn a cultures food, than by learning from someone who is actually from that descent! I mean…learning in person would be better, but that’s the joy of the internet! Everything is at your disposal, it’s just a matter of sorting through everything to find that diamond in the rough haha.
Okay, so back to these beautifully braised lotus roots. Ever since I started my vegan/plant based journey, I've been trying to find other cool interesting, yummy foods to try and I cam across this baby. I couldn’t help myself because this root just looks so beautiful to me! Now, when I made it and shared it with everyone they were a little weirded out by it and thought it looked like alien food because of all the holes. They’re just haters don't mind them.
Because they’re such a dense root, they took about an hour to cook and soften them up. I like to think of these as jazzed up potatoes. They had a similar texture to potatoes and taro root (if you’ve ever had that). Annnd if you were an Asian meat eater, it might remind you of something similar to the cartilage part of the foods. Have you ever had a piece of cartilage that was cooked and softened up, but not softened up to the point where it was gelatinous and still had that crumbly feeling as you chewed it? Sorry to all you avid veggies out there, that’s probably not a picture you want to visualize. Well that’s almost similar to the texture. BUT if you’ve had taro or potatoes it’s basically the same thing as that, at least that’s what I found.
Personally really loved it, I ate it cold the next day straight out of the fridge and it was like eating a piece of Asian BBQ! Omg it took me back and I was so happy for those 5 minutes the pieces last before I chopped the rest up to throw in some stirfry.
Anyways, I hope you all try this baby out! They’re so pretty and delicious! My only suggestion would be to add some other veggies or whatever else you’d like to it. It’s almost like an appetizer. I ate it alone with rice and it was good, but once I chopped up the already braised roots into some stir fried veggies and tofu - game changer! All those textures! YUM!
If you ever try this recipe, I'd love for you to tag me in your posts! I love seeing what you guys recreate!
1 pound skinned and trimmed lotus roots
1 teaspoon white or apple vinegar
1-2 tablespoons vegetable oil
¼ cup soy sauce
2 cloves minced garlic
½ cup sugar ( originally recipe used ¾ cup rice syrup)
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
Slice lotus roots into ¼ inch (0.6 cm) thick discs. Soak them in cold water for 30 minutes.
Boil some water in a pot. Add vinegar and blanch the lotus root slices for 5 minutes, uncovered. Rinse in cold water and strain.
Heat up vegetable oil in a heavy non-stick pan. Stir fry the sliced roots for a few minutes until they get a little softer and translucent.
Add 2¼ cup water, garlic, and soy sauce. Stir and cover. Turn down the heat to low, and cook for 40 minutes. Occasionally open the cover and turn them over to brown evenly. Add more water if necessary.
Add rice syrup and stir. Cover and let simmer for another 20 minutes.
Open and turn up the heat to medium high. Carefully stir and turn over the roots and braise for 10 to 12 minutes, until each slice gets shiny like jelly and almost all the liquid is evaporated.
Remove from the heat and stir in sesame oil. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Serve as a side dish for rice. If you have some leftover, put it in an airtight container and keep it in the fridge up to 2 weeks.
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