One-pot steamed menu and “petals of potato”

This is one of the dozens of uncommon veggies that makes the refinement of Kyoto cuisine.
This petal shaped vegetable is called yurine (lily root) in Japanese. The taste and texture is closed to potato.

Mine was not pretty, I borrowed a photo of the raw whole yurine. I’ll get others soon.


The site says it is “cultivated all over the world”. Really ? I couldn’t find a Latin name, even less an English translation of the name. It existed in the wild only in Japan and Korea. It is now cultivated in Hokkaido mostly (4 tons per year), and 70% is eaten here in Kansai region.
The season is November to February roughly. So it’s often used to make New Year dishes.
It germinates and becomes purple in spots quickly in the daylight (mine did), so in shops, they do like my grand-ma with her carrots, they bury them in sawdust.

Preparation : Brush and wash the yurine. Separate the petals. They can be cooked in many ways like potatoes, boiled, stir-fried, steamed… but the cooking time is very short.

Here they are steamed, and sprinkled with broken pink pepper.
It’s a “tagine steam”.
It’s very convenient. I use the “steam program” of the oven. I started by thawing chicken breast, steam-cooking it. On top, added the yurine, steam-cooked 2 minutes.

No need for fat or whatever, the chicken skin released a little fat as you can see. Added hakusai (Japanese napa cabbage) for 2 more minutes and reheating the sauce (in a cup on the side).

Steamed hakusai and pomegranate for a warm salad. Dressing was simply raspberry wine vinegar, salt, pepper.

Steamed chicken with the leftover orange sauce.
orange sauce with duck

The drink was persimmon tea, well dry leaves of persimmon I had dried (see there).
If you don’t make yours, Japanese (and probably Chinese, Korean…) shops sell 柿茶 (kakicha), 柿の葉茶(kakinohacha).

I broke the leaves, placed them in the basket, covered with boiling water that I discarded after 20 seconds. Then I added more very hot water and let it infuse 10 minutes. It’s has a lightly slightly nutty flavor. It is said to be rich in C vitamin. It’s caffeine free.

(double serving of chicken)
Cal 508 F13.4g C56.9g P40.9g

Did you know that kaki (persimmons) had to become tipsy to be good ?

柿 Kaki is the Japanese persimmon. Other types of persimmons are native of Americas or Middle East. The “Sharon” is of the same type as kaki.

There are kaki all over Asia. But this fruit had a technical problem. It is shibui (bitter, acid) or good… for fruits on the same tree.
To make it edible, you can let it on the tree a long long time, after the leaves have fallen, and the frost will make it sweeter. (now, dry ice can be used to speed up the process)
Or you can dry them.
Or you can pickle them in alcohol.
Or you store them in rice bran
Or you can keep them a few days in a box with apples…

The Japanese producers have done a great job to obtain trees that give fresh sweet kakis. Also, they found a convenient way to ripen the shibui fruits by placing them in a closed box with alcohol a 35 degree a few days. This special atmosphere provokes maturation. That’s why I wrote in tittle the fruits were getting tipsy.
Since then, the kaki has been enjoyed as a fresh fruit too. It’s very abundant in Japan, mostly as a fresh fruit.
China produces huge quantities, especially dry kakis.

I was given branches of kaki from a garden. They are naturally sweet and delicious.

The dry leaves can be used as a herb tea. They bring C vitamin.