Life..a miracle

Life..a miracle

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Taro at its best!

I have been in a phase where I am cooking a lot and yet never get the right set of pictures to post about it! It is laziness at its best and yes I am guilty as charged! But today has become an exception! It is the taro recipe that compelled me to post about it! This stir fry recipe is a quick-fix dinner option that I make almost every 15 - 20 days. Yet to this date I haven't posted about it. I was compelled to do so because a cute old lady asked me what it was in the local Indian store when I picking up a batch for my weekly meals. She humbly asked me, "Is this used to make a sabji?" and I was truly surprised to know something so common for me was still unknown to many!

I was introduced to taro as a root vegetable right since I was a kid. The earliest memories are of me plucking taro leaves for my aunt from her frontyard to make a delicious stew out of it. Back in India, vegetarians end up consuming a lot of root veggies to make up for the much needed meatiness in the meal. Taro is literally just that. I like to think of it as a meat for the vegetarians! ;)

Sorry I forgot to get a picture of how it looks originally, but the web is filled with them! The wiki page surely has some good info on it.

This stir-fry is simple and is ready in no time! It is dry and hence goes really well as a side with just simple dal-rice or some hot phulkas! I love it so much that I can have a bowlful of it and in fact I have ideas for making it as an appetizer, all that meatiness would surely go well with a nice cold margarita or a beer!

Arvi chi bhaji (Taro Stir-fry)
6-8 med. sized taro root (2-3 inches long)
1 tsp Ajwain seeds
1 tsp Turmeric power
0.5 tsp Asafoetida powder
1.5 tsp Red chili powder
2 tsp Coriander-cumin powder
1.5 tsp Amchur (dry mango powder)
1 tsp Mustard seeds for tempering
2-3 Curry leaves
2 -3 tbsp Oil to stir-fry
Juice of 1/2 Lime
Salt to taste
Chopped coriander to garnish
Boiled taro root

  • Boil the taro just like you would boil a potato. I usually do this in a pressure cooker and let it steam for about 4 whistles. Once boiled and cooled, peel the taro skin and chopped it into 1 inch pieces. 
  • Use a non-stick pan to be able to handle the stickiness of the taro with minimal trouble. Add oil to the pan and once heated add the mustard seeds and the curry leaves. Once the seeds crackle,  add the turmeric powder and asafoetida. Once these are cooked in the oil, add in the rest of the spices. We add all the spices into the tempering so that it coats the taro uniformly.
  • Once all the spices are cooked add the taro pieces and let it saute well on med-high heat. Once the edges of the taro start to brown season with salt and add the lime juice. Garnish with coriander and serve with some hot phulkas!
It is a root that you would feel a little awkward to pick up considering its muddy hairy look along with the sticky texture it gets once steamed. But my humble request to all of you will be please look beyond that! It's a delicious root and really quick to work with especially in these hot summer months!
Until next time..

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