All recipes are for 2 servings unless noted. Oil is canola oil and salt is kosher salt.

2012-02-24

Yurine / bai he / dried lily bulbs

Lily bulbs are used in soup, steamed dishes, sautes and deep-fries, and are also a key ingredient in traditional confectioneries.

Fresh, premium, garden-size lily bulbs become available at many grocery stores in Japan in winter, usually starting in December. They are tasty -- subtly sweet with a faint bitterness -- and starchy like potatoes, and they are pricey.

Chinese grocery stores here sometimes carry small fresh lily bulbs at a reasonable price, but it is hard to find ones without blemishes in the U.S. Chinese grocery stores and Chinese herbal medicine shops carry dried lily bulbs, which give the same kind of starchy texture once rehydrated.

Among several lily species used as food, Lilium leichtlinii is the most common in Japan. It is unclear when Japanese started to eat lily bulbs, but by the 17th century lilies were cultivated as food. It is said that 70% of lily bulbs in Japan are consumed in the western half of the country.

Lily bulbs are rich in glucomannan, a soluble fiber that is effective for easing constipation (thus good for dieting and skin) and preventing hyperlipidemia.

In Chinese medicine, lily bulbs are used to alleviate respiratory conditions such as coughs and dryness in the throat, treat insomnia, ease irritation and promote “mental stability.”

Fresh (boiled) 125 kcal/100 g (126kcal/100g); 66.3% water, 3.8% (3.4%) protein, 0.1% fat, 28.3% (28.7%) carbohydrate, 1.3% ash


Recipes with yurine

Try yurine in the following recipes

(Last updated: December 16, 2014)

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