- Combine water and beans in a large pot, bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to simmer, cook uncovered till beans are tender (about 2 hours?).
- Add lotus seed and sugar (plus tapioca and rice balls if you choose to), cook until soup thickens a little and lotus seeds are tender, but not mushy (20 minutes).
- Add vanilla, serve hot for a perfect winter dessert, or you can let the soup cool down, then add ice.
- With this basic recipe, you can take out all the beans, increase the amount of lotus seeds and have a lotus seeds sweet soup instead.