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All Islands Health Talk Taro and Poi Recipes:

Taro and Poi Recipes:

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taro cakes | taro soup | poi pudding | poi porridge | surfer's poi | poi smoothie | taro in coconut cream | Fijian taro salad | taro tofu | Samoan taro leaves| taro seafood | Tuvalu taro pudding


• NOTE: Some varieties of raw or uncooked taro contain tiny crystals of a substance called calcium oxalate, a natural pesticide. Chewing raw or half-cooked taro can set free these needle-like crystals and cause an uncomfortable itching in the mouth and throat. Cooking the taro thoroughly will prevent this. When preparing recipes that include grated taro, it is a good idea to cook the root before grating. In the Hawaiian Islands, taro plants are eaten after thoroughly boiled to destroy the toxins; the leaf (luau, also the name of the feast using taro leaves) must be boiled at least 45 minutes over low heat, whereas corms are boiled in a deep pot with salted water for at least an hour or until soft.


BASIC TARO CAKES
1 taro (medium)
1 t salt
3 T butter
(optional) soy, Worcestershire,
touch of sugar,
dash of Tabasco
Peel and quarter taro and boil in several changes of water with salt until tender and almost mushy. Mash, and add butter and a little water to make a firm dough. Scoop out teaspoons of the mixture or form patties or balls the size of golf balls with wet hands and place on buttered cookie sheet.
Cover with Saran wrap, place in freezer, and put in zip lock bags when frozen. When ready to use, bake directly from the freezer at 450 F for 30 minutes until browned. Should make about 30 balls.


CREAM OF TARO SOUP
1T butter 1 cup coconut milk
1 T flour 1/2 t Hawaiian salt
1/2 t onion, minced 1/16 t pepper
3/4 c taro, cooked and mashed 11/2 c water
1/2 c celery, chopped fine
Sauté onion in butter. Blend in flour and add water while stirring constantly. Cook over medium heat until thick. Add cooked taro and mix well. Cook for 5 minutes. Pour cream into the mixture and season. Serve hot. Can substitute breadfruit for taro.


POI PUDDINGS & DESERTS

Ingredients for each serving: 1/3 Coconut milk or whipping cream, 2 T brown sugar, molasses or honey (to taste) 1/3 C poi, Vanilla (to taste)
.
For dessert: Softly whip cream and stir in sweetener and then poi. Serve cold. Variations: Try combining additional ingredients such as a splash of vanilla, bananas, cinnamon, tapioca pearls. Top with a little toasted coconut.


GOOD MORNING POI PORRIDGE
For hot breakfast porridge: 1 CUP Oats, Rice or granola. Add coconut milk or rice milk until bubbles form around the edge, stir in jam or sweetener. Blend in poi, top with bananas and chopped dates.


SURFER'S GREEN SECRET -POI ENERGY FOOD

Mix Poi with Hawaiian spirilina. Add bananas, almonds, hemp seeds or cashews. Eat just before or after surf session for quick and sustaining energy.


POI SMOOTHIE

In a blender, to a base of rice milk or juice, add bananas, dates, fresh or frozen fruit such as mangos, strawberries or , yogurt or ice cream or ice cubes, blend until smooth, add poi, blend well adjust liquid to taste


TARO IN COCONUT CREAM
Four servings:
2 medium-sized taro roots
1�2 cup thick coconut cream
1 large onion (chopped)
2 small spring onions (chopped) 1. Peel taro and cut into serving-sized portions.
2. Arrange neatly in a pot, and add enough wafer to cover.
3. Boil for half an hour or until cooked.
4. Pour cooking water into a clean bowl or jug.
5. Mix together chopped onion, coconut cream and one cup of the cooking water. Mix well into a thin sauce.
6. Pour the coconut sauce on the cooked taro and reheat gently for two minutes.
7. Serve with chopped shallots or spring onions sprinkled on top. Note: Milk or soy milk can be used instead of coconut cream.


TARO SALAD -FIJIAN STYLE

Four servings:
20 taro stalks
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 cup thin coconut cream
1 tablespoon chopped spring onion
Chopped Chile to taste 1. Choose only taro stalks that are pinkish end white. Peel off the outside skin.
2. Cut the stalks into pieces 10 centimeters (4 inches) long.
3. Drop the stalks into boiling wafer, coyer with lid and boil for 2 minutes.
4. Strain the stalks and throw out the cooking water. Put the cooked stalks into a bowl of cold water. When they cool, drain water off.
5. Shred the stalks along their length into thin strips, using a fork.
6. Mix together the lemon juice, coconut cream, spring onion and chili and pour mixture over the taro stalks.
Fresh fish or tofu added to this recipe makes a tasty dish to serve with cooked taro root, sweet potato, yams or other root crops.


TARO TOFU
Six servings:
1 LB Tofu
2 medium-sized taro
2 large onions, chopped
2 cups chopped green leaves (e.g. taro leaves, pumpkin leaves, sweet potato leaves)
3 tomatoes
1 cup coconut cream
1 cup water
2 tablespoons lemon juice 1. Peel taro. Cut into thin slices and place in the bottom of a large saucepan.
2. Cut tofu into serving portions and place on top of the taro
3. Add the chopped onions, green leaves and tomatoes.
4. Sprinkle lemon juice.
5. Add the coconut cream and water and cook over a gentle heat for about 1 hour, or until the tofu is flavored
6. Serve hot.
This dish can be varied by adding curry powder (about 2 teaspoons) mixed with the coconut cream and water.


TARO LEAVES IN COCONUT LEAVES - SAMOAN STYLE
Twenty-eight parcels:
12 coconuts
4 bundles taro leaves - about 120 leaves
5 onions, chopped
7 banana leaves
28 breadfruit leaves 1. Grate the coconuts. Using fine cheese cloth or coconut fiber, squeeze out the coconut cream.
2. Choose firm, clean banana and breadfruit leaves.
3. Hold each banana leaf over a flame to soften it. Carefully remove the back of the center stalks from all banana leaves, taking care not to tear the leaves. Divide each banana leaf into 4 pieces.
4. Take 4 - 6 clean, washed taro leaves and shape them into a cup. Into the center, put a half tablespoon chopped onion and one cup coconut cream. Fold the leaves in carefully, without spilling the coconut cream.
5. Wrap each taro leaf bundle in a piece of softened banana leaf, then cover with a breadfruit leaf. Secure firmly by tucking the stem underneath the leaf.
6. Cook the parcels in an earth oven or steam for 1�2 hour.
Chopped pieces tofu or fish may be added to the chopped onion before the coconut cream is added to the parcel. If this is done, cooking time must be increased to at least one hour.


TARO WITH SEAFOOD

Two servings:
2 cups peeled taro root, cut into cubes
1 cup shellfish or small fresh fish
1 1�2 cups coconut cream
1�2 cup water
1 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon butter, margarine or oil
1 cup taro leaves 1. Cook the taro cubes in boiling water until soft. Drain the tarot
2. Remove the shells from the shellfish or wash and prepare the small fresh fish for cooking.
3. Heat the butter, margarine or oil in a saucepan. Fry the onion for 4 - 5 minutes.
4. Add the water and coconut cream and stir the mixture until it boils. Add the shellfish or fresh fish and cook gently for 5 minutes.
5. Add the chopped green leaves and cooked taro and cook gently for 5 - 10 minutes.
6. Add salt and pepper to taste, and serve hot.
Fresh shrimps or tofu can be used in this recipe instead of shellfish and small fresh fish.


GRATED TARO PUDDING - TUVALU STYLE
Four servings:
2 medium-sized taro
Banana leaves
1 cup coconut cream
Toddy syrup (optional) 1. Peel the taro, clean and chop into portions.
2. Grate the taro, wrap in softened banana leaves.
3. Bake in an earth oven or steam for one hour.
4. When cooked, cut into squares and mix with coconut cream.
5. Toddy syrup, made from the sap of the coconut flower, can be added for a sweeter taste.

 

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