Screen out any discolored seeds. Separately soak the white for about an hour and brown for about 10 minutes. If using dried lily bulb petals, soak for about half an hour, or till slightly softened (soaking time vary according to thickness of petals).
Discard water and briefly wash the dried seeds and petals. Remove germs inside the seeds, if any. You may want to split the lotus seeds for easy removal should they come in whole. (The germ taste somewhat bitter, but some like to retain it for another healing purpose – reducing heaty feelings in body.)
In a pot, add water and dried lotus seeds. Bring them to a boil. Over medium-high heat, keep boiling for 10 minutes (may leave the cover ajar to avoid over spilling). Then switch to low heat and boil for another 40 minutes.
Add lily bulb petals and sugar, switch to high heat and boil till sugar is dissolved, about 5 to 10 minutes. If you want the lily bulb petals sort of melted in the soup, either soak or cook it a bit longer.
Serve hot with the seeds and flower petals (some prefer to strain the soup, but the solid ingredients are nutritious to eat). Enjoy!
Happy Mid-Autumn Festival Everyone!
The full moon is coming soon on September 12 this year! For another healthy and seasonal eat, give baby taro a try.
White and brown lotus seeds
Any doubt on why there are two types of lotus seeds? Wikipedia has given a good account of them, ‘The brown peel is harvested when the seed head of the lotus is ripe or nearly ripe and the white is harvested when the seed head is still fully green, but with almost fully developed seeds. White lotus seeds are de-shelled and de-membraned. The bitter tasting germ of the seed is also removed at the time of harvest using a hollow needle, though some may still remain in the seed due to production oversight. Brown peel lotus seeds are brown because the ripened seed has adhered to its membrane. These seeds are usually cracked in half in order to remove the germ since the seeds are hard enough to make the germs’ removal by needle difficult.