Source: Official FAO or Food and Agriculture Organization site. http://www.fao.org/docrep/005/ac450e/ac450e08.htm
Taro or gabi is a very popular root crop in the Philippines particularly in the provinces.
The plant is a member of a group of swamp or marsh capable species which have large leaves.
They often grow near rivers and rice farms. That is why most of the farmers find it a staple food and replacement of meat.
The food is usually prepared with coconut milk and often served with chilli.
The root crop is very gelatinous both in uncooked and cooked state which makes it a turn off to some people especially those who do not like okra.
Now let us talk about the benefits of taro or gabi plant:
1.) The food is very rich in fiber which is good for those who have digestive or intestinal problems.
2.) Before we proceed more into the nutritional benefits, don’t you know that taros are an to chemical based household cleaning agent? Yes, because it contains oxalic acid, a main ingredient in bleaching and cleaning products. It also helps remove rust.
3.) The corm or the root crop itself can also be dried to form as a substitute baking flour. In fact, there are delicacies in the Philippines made of gabi corm.
4.) The crop is also an alternative baby food.
5.) And of course vitamins like A and C are in it.
6.) And to those who are into vegetable diet, it is a good replacement for meat as the leaves of the gabi plant contain more protein.
There are several ways to prepare a gabi or taro dish.
One is to prepare it with coco milk. You can sauté the leaves and the stalk and chop the corm into cubes.
For stews, mix it with beef, pork or any meat, as it is good replacement for other crops like potato.
For snacks, you can slice taro into thin strips and deep fry just like potato fries.
As a frozen good, you can grind the root crop into paste and mix with milk, cream and sugar to create gabi ice cream.
However you prepare, there are indeed benefits of taro plant as a healthy food.
Find more information about taro from the official FAO or Food and Agriculture Organization site. http://www.fao.org/docrep/005/ac450e/ac450e08.htm