Sunday, 27 May 2007

Taro “Fries”

Taro has a case of the ugly duckling syndrome. Just look at it – you would not think much of this starchy tropical tuber. Slice it and you will discover its creamy white flesh that is often speckled with pretty purplish or brown markings.

I love taro in savoury and sweet recipes such as steaming small cubes of taro together with rice or boiling taro cubes in coconut milk and palm sugar. You can pretty much use taro as you would potato, but it is more starchy and dense. Taro also has more flavour than potato. It tastes creamy and almost nutty - somewhere between a potato and a chestnut. It is rich in protein, carotene, fibre, potassium and phosphorus.

Taro “Fries”
(Oven baked taro)

600g old taro
Sea salt flakes
1-2 tbsp veg oil (or cooking spray)


Preheat oven to 160 degree C (fan-force)


Peel taro and cut it into “fries” (about 1cm in thickness). Wash the taro to remove any excess starch*. Dry taro on a tea towel.


Toss taro in sea salt flakes and oil. If using cooking spray, make sure that you coat the taro evenly with oil. Otherwise, it will not get crispy.


Place taro on a baking sheet and bake till it’s crispy and lightly browned (about 45 mins).


Serve taro fries immediately. Sprinkle vinegar and extra salt if desired. I like to dip my taro fries in Thai sweet chilli sauce.

*soaking the taro in water and 1 tsp of limestone water for about 20 minutes makes it crispier.


Freya and Paul said...

I wish we could get taro over here - those chips look really good!

Truffle said...

What a wonderful recipe. You've put taro to good use!

Nora B. said...

Freya - yes they were good. A nice change from the usual potato chips.

Truffle - Thanks! I still have half of the taro that I bought, so I might post a taro dessert recipe.

Pei said...

i LOVE taro. the fries look so yummy and crispy... i want some.

Eva said...

I will have to google it - I don't think I've ever seen anything like that. Sounds very interesting, though!

Nora B. said...

Eva, I bought it at Paddy's market yesterday when I did my veggy shopping there. Foods like taro reminds me of home. I don't know why I have been craving food from "back home" these days.

Janet said...

Interesting, I don't think I've eaten Taro, I will have to look for some....

Patricia Scarpin said...

I have never heard of taro but you've got me interested, Nora!
Those fries look good and better, they're not fried!

Em said...

Now I know why Quikong did not rate this recipe hehe

Nora B. said...

Janet, you are an adventurous and persistent cook, so I have no doubt that you will somehow get your hands on some taro.

Patricia, somehow I imagined that taro was common in Brazil, so obviously I am wrong. Actually, the fried version (deep fried with or without batter) is tastier and crispier because taro can get dry if baked too long.

Em - sshhh.... he doesn't know that I made half a kilo because by the time he got home there was only two pieces left. He thought I just made a small batch.... heh heh

Anonymous said...

You're right. I wouldn't have given taro a second look. Now I know what the brown stuff is. Hope to see a dessert recipe. Alicia

Anonymous said...

Meg - yum nora they look great! I miss taro too. Will have to try and find some cassava for you to try - its quite similar to taro and make the best wedges.

Nora B. said...

Hey Meg, I did a quick google search and just realised that we do eat cassava in Singapore. We call it "ubi kayu". But I have never made cassava wedges though. It sounds yum! I hope you'll find some for me.... :-)

Rachel said...

Just a belated thanks for posting this. I'm no foodie but I bought a taro root today because I like Terra Chips so much, and this was exactly the right thing to do with it. Easy and tasty. I'll serve these to guests someday, I think. :)