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Fox nut seed: ji-tou-mi

Date:2017-09-19 11:08:00Source:Suzhou Daily

  It is fox nut seed season now. Suzhou people love these pearl-like little seeds and are willing to buy them despite theirits expensive and ever-yet increasing price. There are many good local dishes made with ji-tou-mi. From this week, I will introduce a few of them to you.

  Fox nut seeds are is called ‘qian shi’ in Chinese, but Suzhou people name it ‘ji tou mi’, and the seed pod ‘ji tou’.

  The price of fox nut seeds this year is between 110 yuan and 120 yuan per 500g. Suzhou people usually buy a few kilograms of the seeds and store them in the fridge.

  Storage of ji-tou-mi

  You need several sealedr bags and water for storing ji-tou-mi.

  First, fill each sealedr bag with one serving of ji-tou-mi.

  Then, pourfill some water into the bags. There is no need to fill the bags with too much water, but make sure that the ji-tou-mi will be frozen inside the ice.

  The final step, seal the bags and put them into the freezer. When you want to eat ji-tou-mi, take out the right amount of them to defrost.

  Boiled ji-tou-mi

  (for breakfast/ snack)

  It is the most common way of cooking ji-tou-mi, and may be the simplest one. But still, gourmets of Suzhou have their way of cooking this dish. Here I will share you both of the recipes, the common one and the gourmets’ one.

  Recipe 1: Oordinary people’s boiled ji-tou-mi


  Ji-tou-mi, as many as you want it

  Water, as much as you feel you need it

  Crystal sugar, to taste


  1. Rinse ji-tou-mi in clean water for a few times.

  2. Bringoil ji-tou-mi to thewith water until it is boiling. Add crystal sugar during the process.

  3. Remove from heatTurn off the fire, and serve ji-tou-mi with theits soup it was cooked in.

  Isn’t it an easy recipe? Let’s see the gourmet’s way of making this dish.

  Recipe 2: Ggourmet’s boiled ji-tou-mi


  AJi-tou-mi, a  regular rice bowl size quantity of ji-tou-mi, a of it, fresh and intact

  Good quality rain water, 1.5L

  Crystal sugar, to taste


  1. Rinse ji-tou-mi gently in clean water for a few times.

  2. Boil the water until crab-eye-sized bubbles appear. Add ji-tou-mi. Smash crystal sugar into smaller pieces.

  3. Add crystal sugar when fish-eye-sized bubbles appear.

  4. Wait for the water to come to a rolling boil. Remove from heatTurn off the fire. Wait for the ji-tou-mi soup to cool down, t. Then serve.

  Gourmet’s note:

  1. The thin outer layer around the seed must stay intact; otherwise it cannot be used for this dish.

  2. The timing is critical. The best appreciation time to use theof the freshness of ji-tou-mi is the first two hours after it was cut from the pond.

  3. The water used must be rain water collected on a stormy day, when the rainfall has cleaned eaves of the house. It is the best water to bring out the fresh and light taste of ji-tou-mi. Well water, spring water or river water aremake no competition. Never use tTap water? You must be joking.

  4. The correct proportion of ji-tou-mi and water is 1:10.

  5. Crystal sugar is the only correct choice.

  6. Many people and restaurants add osmanthus flowers toin this dish, which is a huge mistake. The fragrant flowers wrongly divert people’s attention from the true taste of ji-tou-mi to a seasoning. Don’t do that.

  7. Locally produced ji-tou-mi is the best. Ji-tou-mi produced elsewhere are of different breeds and will not tastemake not as good taste.