White Hyacinth Beans

Ingredient Name:  White Hyacinth Beans or Semen Lablab Album
Traditional Chinese Name: 白扁豆 (bái bian dòu)
What is this?
  • The white hyacinth bean is the dried ripe seed of the Dolichos Lablab L plant.
  • It ripens during the autumn and winter months when it is collected and dried for medicinal use
  • When eaten, it tastes slightly sweet

How do I prepare it?

  • Wash thoroughly and put directly into your soup.
  • For softer beans (in a quick soup), you may soak the beans in room temperature water for a couple hours prior to using them in your soup

Where can I buy this?

  • It is available in most Asian herb shops and some Asian supermarkets.

What is the cost?

  • This ingredient is relatively inexpensive and costs less than $1 CAD for a handful of dried beans.

Any benefits?

  • The white hyacinth bean is traditionally used in Chinese medicine to invigorate the spleen and remove damp.
  • It is especially beneficial during the summer months to alleviate “summer damp”.

Any precautions?

  • Consuming white hyacinth beans in excess may result in loss of appetite and diarrhea.   Eating too much of this ingredient may also be unhealthy for your spleen.   Eat in moderation.