The lotus seed paste used in mooncakes, steamed buns, and other Chinese desserts will be the topic of today’s discussion.
Here’s a recipe for a tasty filling you can use to make your own Chinese pastries at home, just in time for the Mid-Autumn Festival (mooncake season)! What is my go-to program? Lotus moon cakes!
The meaning of lotus seeds has not been fully explained.
The seeds from a lotus plant are called “lotus seeds,” and they are exactly what they sound like. Leaves, roots, seeds, blooms, and even stems are all gathered from this aquatic plant. You can eat the whole thing!
Over a thousand years, this plant has been put to numerous purposes in Chinese cooking (and TCM).
Dried lotus seeds have gained in popularity as of late as a “superfood” due to the many health advantages linked with them. They are a good source of phosphorus, manganese, and B vitamins.
It’s a fantastic plant, that’s for sure. Sarah informed me that researchers have successfully replanted ancient lotus seeds. They may have discovered the key to eternal life, according to some scientists.
THE SWEETNESS OF LOTUS SEED PASTE
Mooncakes, fried sesame balls, and steamed longevity peach buns are just some of the many Chinese delicacies that feature lotus seed paste.
However, to offset the high expense of lotus seeds, several Chinese producers substitute white beans in their paste recipes. While the use of white beans is not necessarily objectionable, the exorbitant prices for mooncakes certainly are.
You can save money and ensure that you’re using only pure lotus seed paste in your homemade sweets by making the paste yourself. In addition, you will have complete control over the ingredients.
PREPARING LOTUS SEEDS
The lotus seed’s green germ is extremely bitter. A hollow needle or a seed cracker is commonly used to get rid of it. If you can find them, it’s much easier to buy lotus seed halves instead of separating them yourself.
Lotus seeds, like all seeds, need to be soaked for a full night before they can be used. Then, the paste can be used in a variety of ways, such as in soups and congees. This recipe does need some forethought, as lotus seed paste is best used after it has chilled in the fridge.
On to the recipe now, shall we?
- 12 ounces of dried lotus seeds
- 4 cups of water
- 1 2/3 cups of powdered sugar
- 1 1/4 cups of peanut oil
- Cut the lotus seeds in half through the widest part at the top with a butter knife. The bitter green core must be removed and thrown away. (You may also just buy split lotus seeds and save yourself the trouble.) Clean it under running water, then put it in a dish and cover it with clean water. Allow soaking throughout the night.
- The lotus seeds should be drained and rinsed once more the next day. Put the seeds and 4 cups (950 ml) of water in a saucepan and let them soak overnight. Make sure your pot isn’t too shallow or too wide; the water level needs to be above the lotus seeds for proper growth.
- Turn on the stove and boil the mixture. Once the water has boiled, reduce the heat to a simmer. Prepare a 30-minute simmer for the seeds. They are ready when the seeds are mushy but still have their shape. Reduce temperature to zero and drain.
- The cooked lotus seeds should be pureed in a food processor until smooth (in two batches if possible). The purée should be transferred to a heavy-bottomed Dutch oven, cast-iron skillet, or nonstick pan to prevent sticking or burning.
- Hold the purée over medium-low heat, stirring regularly with a rubber spatula, for 30 minutes. Add the powdered sugar and oil in three separate batches, alternating every five to ten minutes. It’s important to fully combine the sugar and oil into each batch before adding more.
- Once the lotus paste maintains its form, it is ready to be used. It will have a firmness about it, but also a gentleness.
- After they have cooled to room temperature, refrigerate them in an airtight container. The lotus paste can be prepared a day ahead of time; once chilled, it becomes more manageable.