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What is taro or taro and how to use this tuber in the kitchen

22 mayo, 2021

A few days ago, when I was attending the class of the Indonesian chef Efendi Tumbanan in which he taught us three Indonesian recipes, we laughed because whoever had been in charge of getting the ingredients had to bring galangal, a rhizome similar to ginger or turmeric but with a flavor closer to citronella and instead, it carried taro due to an error of the fruit bowl …

It seems incredible how things change for a single letter … galanga or taro. That’s why today I want to tell you what is taro or taro and how to use it in the kitchen, because luckily, although it didn’t work for the Indonesian cooking class, it does have other very interesting uses.

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What is taro or taro

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Taro is the tuber of a plant called colocasia esculenta original from polynesia and that It is also cultivated in the Caribbean area or the Antilles in Central America, being part of your kitchen. The tuber that hides underground in these large-leaved plants has white or yellow flesh and is high in starch.

The taro is also known by the name of Taro and is a very peculiar variety of tuber, which reminds in a way of cassava or manioc, although it is usually smaller in size and is usually covered with hairs or hairy roots. We can find it white inside but there are also yellowish varieties, or with purple spots and other shades, all of them being similar in nutritional properties.

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It is a tuber similar to the potato, Although taro has a knotter flavor reminiscent of dried fruit, similar to that of water chestnuts. It is also known by the names from taro, island malanga, bituca, pituca, kalo, cará, onkucha, unkucha, Chinese occupation, coconut yautía, balusa potato, madumbe, otoe, or edoy torán.

Nutritionally, 100 g of taro or taro contain 140 Kilocalories with a minimum Fat content: 0.1 g, has no Cholesterol, very little sodium, 0.15 mg, being mainly Carbohydrates (34.6 g), fiber, (5.1g) and some protein and sugar (0.5 g of each uan)

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How to use taro in the kitchen

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There are many applications that this product has in the kitchen, since it intervenes in various preparations of many dishes, especially Antillean cuisine, or Asian cuisine where it is one of the ingredients that sustain their diet.

One of the caveats to be made is that This product should not be consumed raw, as it can be toxic due to its calcium oxalate content., a toxic substance that can irritate the mouth and throat. This substance is removed once the tuber has been cooked.

Taro Peel

To take it cooked, peel to remove the hairs and cook in water for about 20 minutes. Afterwards, it can be mashed like a puree or mashed with a fork to make garnishes. All similar to potatoes, cassava or cassava.

Malanga Chips Fried taro or taro chips

To make these taro chips, ideal for an aperitif or as a garnish, Peel the taro, cut it into slices with the help of a mandolin and soak the chips, changing the water to remove the starch. Then we fry them as if they were potatoes and ready to eat.

Chips Mlanaga Steps

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I hope now that you know what is taro or taro and how to use it in the kitchenYou are encouraged to try it if you see it in the greengrocer, or if like us, you bring it by mistake, because it is a nutritious and tasty product.

Images | Pakus, Wikimedia Commons and