Two varieties of the species are grown. ''Coix lacryma-jobi'' var. ''lacryma-jobi'' has hard shelled pseudocarps which are very hard, pearly white, oval structures used as beads for making , necklaces, and other objects. ''Coix lacryma-jobi'' var. ''ma-yuen'' is harvested as a cereal crop and is used medicinally in parts of Asia.
Job's Tears are called many different names in different cultures:
*'''': The plants are called ''chuān gǔ'' or ''yì yǐ'' . The grains are called ''yì mǐ'' or ''yì rén'' .
*'''': ''bo bo'', ''h?t bo bo'' , ''c??m g?o'', or ''? d?''
*'''': ''juzudama'' or ''hatomugi''
*'''': ''yulmu'' in
Throughout East Asia, Job's Tears are available in dried form and cooked as a grain. The grains are generally spherical, with a groove on one end, and polished white in color, though in Japan unpolished ''yuuki hatomugi'', which is unpolished and brown in color, is also available.
In Korea, a thick drink called ''yulmu cha'' is made from powdered Job's tears. A similar drink, called ''yì mí shǔi'' , also appears in Chinese cuisine, and is made by simmering whole polished Job's Tears in water and sweetening the resulting thin, cloudy liquid with sugar. The grains are usually strained from the liquid but may also be consumed separately or together.
In both Korea and China, are also made from the grain. One such example is the called ''okroju'' , which is made from rice and Job's tears. In , an aged vinegar is made from the grain.
In southern Vietnam, a sweet, cold soup called ''s?m b? l??ng'' has Job's Tears as one of its ingredients. This dish derives from the southern Chinese ''tong sui'' called ''qīng bǔ liáng'' .
It is also used alongside other in traditional Chinese medicine.