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    Posts : 4104
    Join date : 2010-04-16

    Taro Empty Taro

    Post  Floyd on Sun Jul 25, 2010 3:44 am


    = taro root = dasheen = coco = cocoyam = eddo = Japanese potato = baddo
    = elephant's ear = old cocoyam = sato-imo Pronunciation: TAHR-oh Notes:
    If you've sampled poi at a Hawaiian luau, then you're already familiar
    with taro. Many people don't think much of poi, but taro can be served
    far more advantageously. It has an interesting, nutty flavor, and it's
    quite good in stews or soups, or deep-fat fried or roasted. In its raw
    state, it can be toxic and harsh on the skin, so wear gloves or oil your
    hands when handling it, and always cook it before serving it.
    Substitutes: malanga OR parsnip OR sweet potato OR yam OR new potatoes

    This is from another friends site.

    so the calcium oxalate can burn mucus membranes so we must either use
    gloves, or dry hands and dry them over heat for a minute when cutting up
    the taro....

    Recipes: Stewed Taro with Green Onions | Taro Cubes in Coconut Milk

    spring has arrived and the days are warm and sunny, some evenings are
    still rather cool, making me long for warming comfort foods. One
    satisfying and easy-to-make dish brings back fond memories of childhood
    to warm my heart as well. All my brothers and I loved the creamy
    consistency and rich taste of stewed taro, so Mother would always make a
    huge bowlful of it to make sure there was enough to go around.

    is a dense and starchy tuber, growing beneath a moisture-loving plant
    with tall, thick, and fleshy stems, each topped by a very large, lovely
    triangular leaf. Besides being a source of carbohydrates, it is rich in
    thiamine, vitamins B-1 and C, potassium, and iron.

    records reveal that this wild, tropical plant, all parts of which are
    edible, has been a staple food in Asia for many millennia. There is
    evidence that it was first cultivated in India nine thousand years ago,
    long before the cultivation of rice. From there, it spread to China,
    where it has been grown for seven thousand years in the Yangtze River
    valley, and to Southeast Asia, Africa, South America (long before the
    Spanish discovered the New World), and the South Pacific islands today
    are the largest consumers of the starchy tuber.

    There are a few
    different varieties of taro, the large tuber ranging in shape from fat
    oval and almost round to oblong. The thick, rough, and ringed skin can
    be dark, muddy brown or lighter shades and is sometimes hairy. The flesh
    ranges from pure white and cream to purplish gray, often speckled with
    pretty purplish red or brown markings.

    The main tuber of the taro
    plant is large and fat, but along the stringy roots that spread out
    deeper into the soil may be found small, baby-sized ones. Asian markets
    carry both the small and large tubers. The small ones can simply be
    boiled whole in salted water, then peeled and snacked on like a yam. The
    large tubers, however, should be peeled and cut into smaller chunks
    before cooking. Because the starch of taro is dense and dry, moist-heat
    cooking methods, such as boiling and steaming, are much preferred to
    dry-heat cooking methods, such as baking and roasting.

    For a
    richer and creamier consistency, I prefer the medium to large tubers
    that have a dark muddy look and especially ones with clear, reddish
    veining on white flesh. To make sure, I sometimes scrape a small section
    of skin with my thumbnail to check. Select a taro that is firm, without
    any soft spots and traces of mold. A freshly dug tuber will have the
    stem end somewhat pinkish or whitish green, but it is infrequent for
    taro to come that fresh in Bay Area markets.

    If you won't be
    cooking it right away, store in a well-ventilated area (place in a
    hanging basket if you have one) and do not refrigerate as this will
    prolong the cooking time. Adding salt early during cooking, too, will
    make the starch more difficult to break down into the smooth, creamy
    consistency desired.

    A word of caution: Never taste taro while it
    is still raw, as the sap in the flesh contains calcium oxalate that
    irritates mucous linings in the throat. This compound, fortunately, is
    quickly transformed by cooking. If you have very sensitive skin, wear
    gloves, or make sure your hands are dry when peeling and cutting taro.
    Afterwards, warm your hands over a burner for a minute or so, rubbing
    them together to remove any remnants of starch before washing.

    you have tried these recipe and developed a liking for taro, use it to
    add texture and flavor to other savory dishes, such as soups and
    curries. Taro easily absorbs the flavors of the sauces in which it is
    cooked and serves as a natural thickening agent to enrich those dishes.
    Cut into small cubes and steam together with rice for a tasty
    taro-flavored rice.

    Taro makes great crispy chips, fries, and
    fritters. Another big hit in my family while I was growing up were the
    wonderful crispy-crunchy taro fritters Mom frequently made. She
    sprinkled coarsely grated taro with a little salt, then added just
    enough tapioca starch to hold the shreds together when dropped in small,
    loose lumps into hot oil to fry to golden perfection. For a spicy
    flavor, add a small amount of grated ginger to the taro mixture before
    frying, or dip the fried crispy fritters in bottled Sriracha hot chilli
    sauce and enjoy!

    In Southeast Asia, taro is also used as a starch
    base for a wide range of desserts and sweet treats. It makes a rich,
    smooth, and creamy custard with eggs, coconut milk, and palm sugar. For
    an easy dessert, simmer half-inch cubes of taro in coconut milk
    sweetened with sugar and flavor-enhanced with a small amount of salt.
    This makes another quick comfort food to warm those cool spring

    Stewed Taro with Green Onions

    ◦ 1 medium to large taro (about 1 1/2 lb.)
    ◦ 6 cloves garlic, chopped
    ◦ 3-4 Tbs. peanut oil
    ◦ 1-2 Tbs. light soy sauce, to taste
    ◦ 1-2 cups hot water
    ◦ 2-3 green onions (both white and green parts), cut into thin rounds

    taro with a sharp knife to remove all the muddy skin. If it is not a
    very fresh one or has soft spots, trim until you get to the firm, white
    flesh that is speckled with purplish red markings. Depending on its
    size, halve or quarter the taro lengthwise and slice each half or
    quarter crosswise about 1/4-inch thick. Set aside.

    Heat a wok
    until its surface begins to smoke. Swirl in oil to coat wok surface and
    wait 15-20 seconds for the oil to heat. Add garlic, stir, and follow
    with the taro. Stir well to coat the pieces with oil and lightly brown
    for about a minute. Then, add enough hot water to almost cover the taro
    (about 1 1/2 cups). Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium, cover, and
    cook 15-30 minutes (see note). Stir occasionally to prevent sticking and
    burning. Add more water if the taro has dried but is still in firm

    When the taro has softened and the pieces are beginning
    to break down into a grayish, gooey consistency, add the light soy sauce
    and green onions. Stir well. If the mixture is too thick and dry, add a
    bit more water. Cook 1-2 minutes longer, or until the green onions have
    softened and their flavor blended in with the taro.

    Serves 4-6 either by itself, or with rice in a multi-course family-style meal.

    Taro Cubes in Coconut Milk

    ◦ 2 to 3 cups of 1/2-inch taro cubes
    ◦ 2 cups or 1 14-oz. can unsweetened coconut milk
    ◦ 1/4 - 1/2 cup granulated sugar
    ◦ 1/4 - 1/2 tsp. sea salt

    a saucepan, heat coconut milk with sugar and salt until well blended.
    Bring to a boil, add the taro pieces and cook over low to medium heat
    until tender (about 7-10 minutes). Serve warm for best flavor.

    Posts : 4104
    Join date : 2010-04-16

    Taro Empty Re: Taro

    Post  Floyd on Sun Jul 25, 2010 3:45 am

    I used to do quite a bit with taro when I taught macrobiotics- funny to see it here- have not heard the word in some time Taro Smile

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