Lotus root (renkon 蓮根) is actually the stem of the lotus plant and it’s edible and used in Asian cuisines.
Lotus root is available as fresh in whole or packaged form. If you use fresh lotus root, peel the stem and soak it in vinegar to prevent from changing its color. Packages of whole or cut and sliced lotus root, which comes in a solution of water and salt, are used in the same way as fresh lotus root.
Lotus root is used for stir-fry dishes, simmered dishes, soups and stews, and deep fried dishes in Japanese food. Even after cooking, it has crunchy yet tender texture and enjoyed in many dishes such as Hijiki Salad, Chikuzenni, and Renkon Chips.