A knobby edible tuber of a water plant indigenous to Southeast Asia. The water chestnut's brownish-black paper-like skin resembles that of a true chestnut, but its flesh is white, crunchy and juicy. The flavor is bland with a hint of sweetness. These are a staple in Chinese cooking. Although the name refers to them as a nut, they are not a nut at all; they are a vegetable that is grown in the marshes. The reason they are called water chestnuts is because they resemble the chestnut in shape and color.
Choose fresh chestnuts that are firm with no sign of shriveling. htly wrapped in a plastic bag, for up to a week. Peel before using raw or in cooked preparations. Water chestnuts are also available canned, either whole or sliced in most supermarkets, but the fresh are far superior.
Refrigerate, tightly wrapped in a plastic bag, for up to a week. Peel before using raw or in cooked preparations.
ater chestnuts are very popular in Asian cooking, especially in stir-fried dishes where their crunchy texture is a standout. Water chestnuts are available fresh in most Chinese markets.