Taros has a beautiful light purple color, with a round or slightly elongated shape. It is pliable, aromatic, starchy, and mildly sweet. This tuber has a delicious flavor when it is thoroughly cooked. With a specially flavorsome taste, taro has long been a favorite food in many family’s meals.
1/ General information
Concerning appearance, taro plants are similar to mints, but they are darker green with green or purple stems. The part that is usually used is the tuber, but it is a pseudo-stem that grows underground. All parts of the taro plant contain sap, which can cause itching or allergic reactions if stuck to the skin accidentally.
Taro originated in Tropical Asia. There are many different names for it from all over the world. This plant has a round or long underground stem that contains a lot of starch, but it is often mistaken for a tuber. Due to its characteristic scent, mild sweetness, and high nutritional content, this underground stem is harvested and used as an ingredient in many recipes. In addition, the petiole that many people mistakenly think of as its stem can also be eaten but is not commonly used.
2/ Nutritional ingredients
Not only does it have an attractive taste, but taro also provides energy and other nutrients for the body. According to the USDA, taro contains the following ingredients:
- 112 calories
- 34.6% starch
- 19% folate
- 49% sugar
- 51% fiber
- 11% fat
- 52% protein
- 30% manganese
- 11% vitamin C
- 19% vitamin E
- 22% vitamin B6
- 10% potassium
- 10% phosphorus
- 10% magnesium
Since taro is packed with innumerable nutrients that are beneficial for the body, you can receive many benefits for your health:
Fiber is a supplementary ingredient, which is not absorbed by the body, so it does not raise blood sugar. At the same time, it exists in the intestines to regulate the digestive process, preventing blood sugar spikes.
Fiber cleans the intestinal tract, removing waste products, allowing the digestive system to remain clear and healthy, and allowing the intestines to absorb nutrients more effectively. It also helps a lot in preventing constipation.
Apart from protecting the circulatory system and promoting heart health, fiber also prevents harmful cholesterol from entering the body.
In taro, the extract contains quercetin – a polyphenol substance that inhibits inflammation, infections, and cancers.
Adding antioxidant-rich foods in your daily meals also helps slow down the aging process of the body.
In addition to providing energy for the body, starch also plays a key role in fermenting food and attracting beneficial bacteria, which strengthens the immune system and increases nutrient absorption.
3/ How to prepare taro properly
You may experience itching from the sap of fresh taros if it gets on your skin, or worse, you may experience itching in your throat if the taros are not properly cooked. Therefore, you should pay attention when preparing and making dishes with taros:
- Before peeling the taros, you need to dry your hands thoroughly, then put on gloves.
- It is advisable to let the taros dry before peeling and during preparation because water can cause the itch to spread.
- They should be boiled or grilled before peeling.
- After the taros are fully cooked, they can no longer cause itching.
How to quickly deal with the itch caused when peeling a taro
- Using vinegar mixed with water or lemon juice mixed with salt can stop you from getting itchy hands.
- Put your hands near a fire for about a minute if your hands are itchy after accidentally touching a taro.
- For immediate relief, you can also grind a green banana leaf and rub it on the itchy area for 7 to 10 minutes.
4/ Some ideas for making taro dishes
If you don’t know what recipes to cook with taros, Long Produce will give you a few suggestions:
Taro steamed with coconut milk: This recipe is slightly sweet with a hint of fat, an unforgettable dish because of its attractiveness.
Fried taro balls: This dish is very simple to prepare, just boil the taros, mash them and cover them with a layer of deep-fried flour.
Fried taro: If you want to make it even simpler, just prepare the taros, slice, and fry them. This dish is so simple, yet so delicious!
Soup with taro: You can turn taro into an ingredient of any soup with pork, chicken, duck, or seafood.
Taro ice cream: With its purple color and distinctive aroma, taro ice cream will be a very attractive recipe, which is why you don’t want to miss it!
Taro smoothie: It sounds strange, but this dish is not inferior to taro ice cream. To make this dish, you need to boil the taro, then blend it with milk, coconut milk, and roasted peanuts.
In addition, taro is also used to make cakes, produce flavorings for confectionery, and even drinks.
Interested in purchasing taros? Call Long Produce via 323-582-0111.