Every time I shop at Ranch 99 (A Chinese supermarket chain in US), my eyes would take a quick look at lotus root placed at the top most rack but would move on with my shopping list. Many times, I have been tempted to pick it, but somehow I have never purchased it. Last week, I decided to try my hands on them. I just picked one and thought shall buy more if they tasted great and is liked by S.The lotus root is classified as a vegetable which is indigenous to Asia. It is found underwater and has a reddish brown color outer skin which needs to be peeled before cooking. I felt that the white interior of the lotus root had a texture similar to that of banana stem (vazhai thandu in Tamil) and they had a fibrous thread like extension while slicing. The beautiful holes that run through its length make them look pretty when sliced.
Once back home, I proudly waved it to my mom like a scientist who discovered a new theory but she politely snubbed me back saying that lotus roots were quite common in her native village and she has tasted it before. She educated me that they are rich in dietary fiber, vitamin C and Vitamin B6. While she was talking, I thought to myself that how my deep-fried crisps going to be healthy. Anyways, let’s first try it I announced. I sliced them thin and soaked in salty water for a while. Like the bees buzzing around the flowers, this deep fried delicacy was surrounded by my family. Empty dishes vouched for its taste.The addition of rice flour gave an extra crispiness to it. The aromatic cumin and fresh home-made garam masala gave an Indian twist to it. Lotus root crisps is a simple snack that can be prepared even by novice cooks.The adorable shape with attractive holes reminds me of a brown crystal earring. The gorgeous looking bite sized lotus roots convinces me to hang them together like a garland for an edible jewelry party. My crunchy appetizer is sure to draw attention from kids to grannies. We loved it so much and this is definitely one of the best food I have eaten so far and has been really addictive. I have made it over and over again for the last 2 weeks. Spicy, salty and crunchy – A perfect snack to munch on a movie night or over a game day. Coming weekend, I am making this for Superbowl.
1 lotus-root – 2 feet long
2 cups water
1tsp cumin powder
2tsp garam masala
1tbs rice flour or all purpose flour
Salt and pepper to taste
Oil to fry
Peel the reddish-brown exterior of the lotus root and slice them paper thin (if possible). Wash them in cold running water and soak it in water- vinegar solution and little salt. I left them for 30 minutes. Remove and drain the excess water. Pat dry them with paper towels. Dust them with flour.
Heat oil to 350’F and once they get heated up, fry them in batches. Drain the excess oil in a paper towel and sprinkle cummin powder, garam masala, salt and pepper. Serve hot with ketchup and mayonnoise.