Taro is something most people who enjoy Asian cooking will be familiar with. When the celebrations for Chinese New Year begin, a lot of Asian natives indulge in delicious taro cake. This is a dish that is made of plain rice flour and shredded radish. A lot of people like to add additional ingredients to add to the flavour, such as Chinese sausage, dried shiitake and dried shrimp. This may be the most famous taro dish but it is not the only way that you can enjoy this vegetable.
There are a lot of different ways that you can enjoy this delicious vegetable, and the Internet has meant that we now have access to a whole host of exciting and unique recipes, which you can try out at home. Not only are taro dishes tasty, but also they present a lot of health benefits too. In this post, we will take a look at some of the different reasons why you should consider adding taro to your diet, as well as providing you with a recipe to try out if you would like to enjoy taro in a way that you may not have before.
What is taro?
When we hear the word taro, our mind tends to wander to different dishes that incorporate it, such as the famous taro cake that we mentioned earlier. However, taro actually refers to the root of the taro plant. It is a vegetable that is eaten all over the world. The leaves can also be consumed. Nevertheless, this is not a vegetable that can be enjoyed raw. It needs to be cooked thoroughly to ensure all the calcium oxalate is leached out. From curries to even desserts, taro is used in a wide range of dishes, as it is an extremely flexible ingredient.
What are the benefits of taro?
Taro may be one of the tastiest ingredients on a menu, but it also offers a wide range of health benefits as well, which are as follows…
Antioxidants – Both the yellow-fleshed roots and the taro leaves contain a considerable degree of phenolic flavonoid pigment antioxidants. This includes the likes of Vitamin A, Cryptoxanthin and B-carotenes.
Rich in fibre – 100g of taro flesh provides 11 per cent of your recommended daily fibre intake. This is one of the best sources of dietary fibre, which helps with the gradual rise in blood sugar levels.
Gluten-Free – The corms provide vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and dietary fibre. Moreover, they are entirely free from gluten.
Restore Oral Health – A lot of people do not realise that taro offers a number of different benefits when it comes to oral health. This is because the vitamin E and magnesium are ideal for maintaining bone strength and keeping your teeth strong and healthy. Don’t underestimate just how important this is. Dental problems plague people all over the world. Weak bones can result in bone loss, which can mean a dental graft, also known as a block bone graft. This shows why it is important to maintain your dental hygiene, and eating right is the best place to start.
Lower Blood Pressure – Taro is a low sodium food, making it ideal for anyone who suffers from high blood pressure.
Original taro recipe: Oven Baked Taro Chips
Finally, I would like to share with you one of my favourite taro Chinese dishes. Oven-Baked Taro Chips taste great and are easy to make. They make a fantastic substitute for chips. If you are counting your calories, swap your greasy chips for this recipe. Aside from one taro root, all you will need is some salt and vegetable oil spray.
Begin by preheating the oven to 400 degrees. Once you have done this you will need to remove the taro root’s rough outside layer. You can do this easily by using a peeler. After the skin has been removed slice the vegetable into even and thin slices. You can use a cleaver or a mandolin slicer to do this. Take each slice and spray both sides with the vegetable oil. Simply place the slices of taro onto a baking tray and place them inside the oven until they turn golden brown. This should only take about 20 minutes!
So there you have it: everything that you need to know about taro and the health benefits that are associated with this vegetable. Let us know if you have any exciting and tasty taro recipes.