Thursday, October 9, 2014

Taro spirals

~ Flavors of India ~
 Traditional Taro leaf Spirals
(Healthy, steamed and can be frozen too !!)

Taro root tuber is one of the most popular and widely used 
root vegetable throughout the indian subcontinent. Often called
 yam, colocasia or arvi it  is cultivated not only for  root but also 
for its tender leaves ands stems that are edible. It is believed 
that the cultivation of this versatile plant dates back to several 
hundred centuries. From root to stems and leaves , its an integral 
part of several regional and traditional cuisines . 

Traditional Taro leaf spirals 

The root tubers are usually boiled and eaten like potatoes as 
mash, curries or stir fried while the tender stems are slightly 
boiled to remove the acrid taste and used for making stews and
 curries .The green  leaves are chopped or used whole. Its 
always advisable to pick tender leaves as as jumbo sized
 ones cause itchy discomfort . Adding some acidic ingredient
 while cooking the leaves like lemon, tamarind or sour yogurt
 neutralises the itchy compounds . 

At the local veggie market during this season , I never forget to 
pick up a few taro greens for making my family's  favorite 
Maharastrian Taro spirals  called Aluvadi (also called Pathod , patra  
 or aluchya vadya in  regional dialects ). Being gluten free, steamed 
and  pan fried adds an extra  bonus to this healthy leafy munchy .

With a few ingredients and spices from the pantry this yummy 
delight gets ready in just a few minutes. Ginger, garlic and lemon juice
perfectly pep the  recipe while reducing its the itchy ingredient present 
in the leaves. Chilies are purely optional , you can omit them 
while preparing it for kids. The recipe once cooked can be frozen
 in Ziplocl bags or freezer boxes upto three months. 

A thick paste of gram flour, spices and water is smeared on the back 
side of a leaf, repeating the process with a few more and tightly rolling n
sealing the ends . The tighter the roll the better are the steamed spirals. 
Gram flour can be replaced with corn meal or buckwheat flour too.

The rolls are then steamed , cut into thick slices and pan fried. 
If you are freezing the spirals just omit pan frying, once cooled place the 
spirals on a large tray/ plate in a single layer and keep in the freezer for
 sometime, once they are hard and frozen transfer to Ziplock bags and
 freeze.Thaw and shallow fry the frozen spirals before serving. 

The spirals taste best  with some green chutney , fried chilies 

and a wedge of lemon.Just make sure to pick the  tender green
 leaves, free from pesticides.  

Taro Spirals

Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins (+cooling time)

Ingredients (16-18 pieces)
    For Taro roll spirals
    • 12 -15 organic tender Taro leaves (Arvi ke patte)
    • 2 cups gram flour ( besan)
    • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
    • 1/4 tsp chili powder
    • 1/2 tsp nigella seeds ( kalonji )
    • 1/2 tsp carom seeds ( ajwain)
    • 2 tsp lemon juice (or 1/2 tsp dry mango powder / tamarind pulp )
    • 1 tsp ginger garlic paste (pref fresh)
    • Chopped green chillies (to taste)
    • Salt to taste
    • Water as required
    Wash and pat dry the taro leaves and keep aside.
    In a large bowl mix together gram flour, spices, lemon juice and water to make a thick paste.
    Place a leaf(vein side up) on the kitchen counter or chopping board and smear the chickpea paste generously.
    Place another taro leaf (with end pointing in the opposite direction that the previous one) over it and spread the paste.
    Repeat the process to form a stack of 6-7 leaves. Roll tightly .
    Make a similar roll with rest of the leaves.
    Steam cook for 20 mins in a steamer or pressure cooker.
    Remove from heat and cool completely. Cut into thick roundels.
    Heat a few drops of oil in a pan ,add sesame seeds and shallow fry the spirals from both the sides till crisp.
    Serve hot with lemon wedges and green chutney.
    ( To freeze the spirals - line the steamed spirals in a single layer on a large tray and place in the freezer for an hour, once hard remove from tray and pack in ziplock bags .Thaw and shallow fry the frozen spirals before serving)
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    1. Un PLATO muy interesante y además no me cabe duda de que muy sabroso!!!
      Buen fin de semana querida :)))

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