Dried Lily Flowers (Golden Needles)
This Chinese specialty is also referred to as "lily buds", "golden needles," or gum jum. According to Eleanor Nakama-Mitsunaga of the StarBulletin. " they symbolize wealth for the Chinese at the Lunar New Year (Jan. 22 this year)"
The dried lily buds have a fruity, floral scent and are used in a variety of traditional Chinese dishes including sweet and sour soup.
Article by: Barbara Bowman
About The Lily Flower
Although sometimes the flowers are called "tiger lily buds" they are in fact the the bud of the cultivated Day Lily. The flower has been used in Chinese cuisine for hundreds of years.
The buds are harvested when they are about 3 to 5 inches long and dried. Once dried the bud color changes to a golden yellow.
Lily buds are typically found in Asian stores or can be purchased online at GourmetSleuth.com
. Typically available in cello bags the buds should be gold to medium (not dark) brown. Store
Store in an airtight container, refrigerated. The buds will keep indefinitely.
Prepare Lily Buds For Use
Buds must be soaked in warm water for about 30 minutes, then rinsed in fresh water. Cut off any hard stem end and cut the buds in half. They can be used whole or broken. Traditionally each strand is knotted before use to bring out the flavor.