The Lotus Flower not only shares beauty with us, but each part of the plant: seeds, root, stem, flowers, seed pod and leaves all have medicinal properties and are used in Oriental Medicine. For example the seeds are eaten to increase vitality and aid digestion while being a good source of protein. The entire root is also used medicinally. In cross section the root resembles the lungs; which is where it is traditionally applied for its healing properties. It is used to treat respiratory ailments such as tuberculosis, asthma and coughing as well as for heart disease. It is said to melt phlegm and mucus in the body, especially in the respiratory system. In addition lotus root is used for regulating inflammation in the intestines.
Take a fresh lotus root segment, peel and then slice into as thin cross section pieces as you can manage. Soak the sliced root in fresh water until you are ready to cook it. When cooking the lotus root, be sure to use a non-reactive pan so that the root is not discolored in the cooking process.
Place oil in your wok and heat. Quickly sautee the lotus in the oil, covering each piece with some oil. Add white rice wine and white rice vinegar to the lotus root (1-2 tablespoons of each or to taste). Add ½-1 cup water and bring to a simmer. Cover with a lid and allow to simmer 10-20 minutes. Stir periodically. Salt to taste and (optionally) add 1 teaspoon of sugar. Stir well. Continue to stir fry without lid for a few more minutes. Taste and adjust flavorings. Serve warm.
You may also thinly slice chicken, pork or beef and stir fry with the lotus root or add a variety of vegetables to make a complete meal.