Thursday, September 2, 2010
Those flowers are pretty, but who knew they were edible?
Recipe #13: daylilies with collard greens
Every year at this time the day lilies are beautiful. Frequently crowds of people from the neighborhood would stop by our house.
These species of dayliles are different from other ones in the United States. They are from the Alishan Mountains in Taiwan. These flowers are grown in a pure environment, and are edible. In the thousands of years of Chinese history, daylilies have been used as food. Not because they are beautiful, but they comewith a relaxing feeling. Eating those dayliles would help sleep well and relive the stress. The Chinese believed that only one type of person would help forget the troubles: the mother. Thus, daylilies are the "mother flower" of China. Not only can they be eaten raw, but can also be consumed dried.
Ever since we planted those flowers, many people, including Americans, have wanted to learn about the flowers. Some friends would pick over 100 flowers at once. It's like those daylilies are always there and never run out. From the flowers we have given out, there must have been over 100 plants. From my mother's friends, each sandwich bag of daylilies cost about $100.
Many friends who have picked jusr dayliulies would make dishes purely of them. And many teenage girls say they like them because they taste sweet. My mother likes to fry them with other greens, since red and green makes a beautiful color combinaiton.
Suateeding is the easiest method, but to me it is a bit neervous at first. Because we must put it in hot oil (it tastes better this way), and I would toss the flowers in, since I was afriad of oil brns. Only then do I learn that this is actually more dangeorus. Since the oil isn't actually that hot, there is actiually some tactics.
1. 1 bunch collard greens
2. 15-20 daylilies
3. 2 slices of ginger
4. 1 Tbsp. cooking oil
5. 1 pinch salt
6. 1 Tbsp. hot water
1. Remove and discard stems and center ribs of collard greens.
2. Cut leaves into small pieces.
3. Remove the irises of the daylilies.
4. Heat oil in a 12" frying pan. Add ginger.
5. Stir in daylilies for about a minute, add collards and mix well.
6. Add salt. Sauté collard mixture, stirring, add hot water and mix well, continue cooking until heated through.
1. Collard greens are sold by the bunch in supermarkets. From our garden, we can pick it whenever we want, about 8-10 pieces, depending on the size of the leaves and how large of a dish you want.
2. Chinese people usually cook on high heat. However, this degrades the quality of the oil, so we usually use between medium and medium high (about 8). Adding water makes it cook faster and decreases the time of exposure to the oil.
3. The collards from supermarkets are tougher, but the above method makes them tender. Because it is both tender and cooked after a short time, it is healthy because it keeps the nutrients.
4. Some species of daylilies are poisonous. Be sure to get the right type.
5. If you really like daylilies, you can increase the number to 30, or even 40.