I made this recipe for quinoa yucca veggie burgers when we had an abundance of cassava root and an abundance of quinoa from our original covid-19 stock up on protein rush. This recipe is great for making veggie burgers in bulk and then freezing a few for future snacking.
Ingredients for Quinoa Yucca Vegetable Burgers
5 cups cooked quinoa
1 can garbanzo beans
2 large handfuls of fresh herbs
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
4 cups cooked and roughly chopped casssava
1 ½ teaspoons salt or to taste
fresh ground pepper to taste
½ cup or more gluten-free flour or not to coat
Steps for Quinoa Cassava Burgers:
1. Cook the quinoa according to instructions 2. Prepare and cook cassava 3. Meanwhile, chop onion, garlic, carrot, fresh herbs and sauté in pan until soft 4. In a food processor, blend cooked cassava, onion and herb sauté and egg and process until mostly smooth 5. Put cooked quinoa in large bowl and add cassava herb mixture from food processor mix well, season as desired 6. In a separate bowl add gluten-free flour or flour of choice. Place ⅓ cup mixture or so into bowl and form a ball, then squish into a patty 7. Then you can either pan fry, air fry, or bake your patties. 8. If your are using an air fryer I recommend 14 minutes brushed with coconut oil or sprayed with olive oil before and in the middle of cooking time before flipping 7 minutes into the cooking time 9. If you prefer to bake… bake at 425 and coat the pan in oil and brush the burgers in oil. You may then choose to flip halfway through baking at around 15 minutes. 10. If you are pan frying, they need about 3-5 minutes on each side to make sure the egg is cooked through.
This vegetarian bean load is pretty good for being so incredibly easy. And it is a great way to use all those beans you stocked up on! This recipe is adapted from the Spicy Bean and Lentil Loaf recipe from the book… “Vegetarian: The Greatest Ever Vegetarian Cookbook”. This is my quick and dirty recipe. Enjoy your own variations!
Recipe for Vegetarian Bean Loaf
Ingredients and steps:
Sauté these first:
1 clove garlic chopped
1 carrot copped
1 onion chopped
2 celery stalks chopped
large handful fresh herbs like parsley, basil, dill, rosemary, thyme etc.
Then in a food processor blend…
sautéed veggies and herbs
1 can garbanzo beans drained and rinsed
1 can kidney beans drain and rinsed
After blended until smoother move to a bowl and add these remaining ingredients ½ cup breadcrumbs ( I use ½ frozen ends of loafs and ½ oatmeal)
½ cup cheese (I use shredded Parm)
1 tablespoon ketchup
2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon or more to taste cayenne
salt and pepper to taste
Bake at 350 degree in an oiled loaf pan for 45-60 minutes and serve warm or cold.
This holiday season, I am always reminded to be more grateful, and more industrious with the food we grow on our farm. We just harvested a large amount of taro – and of course my first thought was to make another large batch of taro burgers. This time I didn’t have the ingredients I had on hand for my last taro burger recipe, Taro Millet Burgers so I had to experiment again! The taro burger recipe below features taro, rice and fresh herbs and vegetables. You could probably make it vegan if you left out the eggs but I think the little bit of extra protein from eggs is a bonus in this recipe.
More about Taro
Taro is Native to South India and Southeast Asia and in Hawaii is considered a “canoe plant” (it was brought here by the first Polynesian settlers. Kalo (the Hawaiian word for Taro) has extreme significance in Hawaiian diet and culture. In the Native Hawaiian creation story , taro is the the older brother of mankind. Throughout Hawaii’s history, taro remained a staple crop and a significant part of the diet. Today, on the Hawaiian Islands kalo is still consumed regularly, but does not make up as large of a percentage of the diet as it had previously.
The scientific name for taro is Colocasia esculenta. It belongs to the Araceae (aroid) family, in the large genus, Colocasia. There are many varieties within 2 main types, dryland taro and wetland taro. We grow dryland taro in our garden, in raised rows. We get plenty of rain here on the Hāmākua coast of Big Island so this method is suitable and there is no need for us to grow wetland taro in Lo’i (taro ponds).
All of the taro plant is edible. However most people who are referring to taro, are referring to the root or corm when they say taro. In addition to the root, both the leaves and the stems of taro are also edible. But, all parts of the plant need to be thoroughly cooked; otherwise they contain too much calcium oxalate, which is considered toxic and will result in a very itchy and uncomfortable throat when consumed undercooked.
You can even put all of the taro plant in the pressure cooker at once. First the steam basket, then taro root, then stems and then leaves. The stems have a delicious nutty taste when they are freshly cooked and warm. The corms are often compared to potatoes, but they are stickier, starchier, and tastier. The also have a slightly nutty taste.
Health benefits of taro
Taro has so many health benefits. Many people believe that eating taro is an essential part of a healthy diet. It is not easy to harvest and cook it, you have to dig it up, wash it, cook it, then process it. It sticks to everything and leaves quite a mess! But it is worth it. The whole process, (including digestion) slows you down and makes your truly appreciate the food. Taro root is high in fiber and potassium and also contains some folate, Vitamin E, Vitamin C and a small amount of calcium. See the nutrition facts in the chart below.
Taro nutrition Facts
(Colocasia esculenta (L.) schott), raw, Value per 100 g, (Source: USDA National Nutrient data base)
Cook white rice (2.5 cups water, 2 cups rice, bring to boil and cover for 20 minutes)
Sautee onions and carrots in olive oil, add garlic and cook until soft, add chopped greens and cook until wilted.
While you got the veggies going, chop taro into chucks and place food processor
Pulse taro in processor until mostly uniform and not very chunky. This may take several batches.
Remove and place in large mixing bowl
Now in food processor blend ½ the amount of cooked rice, eggs, herbs, soy sauce, salt, pepper.
Mix into the large mixing bowl with taro and add the other ½ of the rice
Mix by hand until thoroughly combined.
In another bowl empty about a cup of breadcrumbs. Make balls out of the taro mixture, cover them in breadcrumbs and then press to make a patty. Add more breadcrumbs as needed to complete covering the taro burgers in breadcrumbs.
You can panfry the taro burgers or baked them. In this bulk recipe I did both. The panfried ones had a nice crispy outside. The baked ones didn’t crisp up so well but will be great frozen and then crisped up in a pan.
To fry them place 2 tablespoons oil in a heated pan, fry for about 5 minutes on each side being carfeful not to burn. Add more oil as needed to get em crispy.
To bake, oil a baking pan or sheet and place patties in preheated oven 375-400 degree F, flip burgers after about 20-25 minutes.
Enjoy! Make an exotic aioli and enjoy these on fresh buns or sourdough – snack on the them cold straight outta the fridge.
This simple recipe explains how to cook taro with a pressure cooker. If you don’t have a pressure cooker you can boil it, but it takes much longer 1-2 hours maybe more. You must be careful to fully cook all parts of the taro plant because it contains calcium oxalate. This will make your mouth feel numb, itchy, scratchy and very uncomfortable, with possibly worse side effects if you eat too much or are very sensitive.
If you don’t have a pressure cooked, I highly recommend the Presto Model number 01370. It hold 8-Quarts and is stainless steel and only about $52 on Amazon.
I actually process taro in both my “analog” pressure cooker and in my Instant Pot (which is a bit smaller 6 quarts) at the same time
Taro, or known in Hawaii as Kalo, is an amazing plant. The roots, stems and leaves are all edible and have unique distinct character. It is also extremely nutritionally dense. Compared to a potato, the taro root has more fiber and is a good source of calcium, potassium, and Vitamins C, E and Bs as well as trace minerals.
Taro is most known in Hawaii for Poi, a slightly fermented paste of cooked and mashed taro. However, taro is used to make many more things. You can dehydrate it and make flour, you can eat the steam stems as a vegetable, and the cooked greens are versatile in curries, wrapped around meat, in soups etc. This staple crop for tropical climates cannot be over estimated.
This simple recipe explains how to cook taro with a pressure cooker. If you don't have a pressure cooker you can boil it, but it takes much longer 1-2 hours maybe more. You must be careful to fully cook all parts of the taro plant because it contains calcium oxalate. This will make your mouth feel numb, itchy, scratchy and very uncomfortable, with possibly worse side effects if you eat too much or are very sensitive.
Course Side Dish
Keyword Kalo, Pressure Cooker, Taro
Prep Time 15minutes
Cook Time 45minutes
Pressure release time 10minutes
Total Time 1hour10minutes
Pressure cooker with steam basket
8cupslarge chunks of Taro
Wash and scrub taro. I like to peel mine before I cook it because I feel like the scruffy skin would clog my pressure cooker. However, many others like to scrub it real good and clean the skin off after it is cooked.
Cut into fist size pieces and place them steam basket in pressure cooker.
Fill water up to right below the steam basket. Place taro into basket and secure the lid and Bring to pressure (you will notice the steam start coming out)
Reduce to medium heat and cook 30-45 minutes depending on how much you have in there and how big the pieces are.
Turn off the heat and let it cool for 10 or more minutes. Release the pressure and wait until all steam has been released.
Open the pressure cooker, the taro should be soft, showing a few cracks, and also be easy to slice with a knife.
Recipe Ideas for Taro:
There are so many ways to prepare taro. We just started harvesting them on our farm and have done little experimenting. One easy way to prepare cooked taro is just to slice it and fry it in a shallow pan with 2 tablespoons or so of oil. Just add a little salt and pepper to each side and fry each side until crispy (about 3 minutes on each side). Another recipe that we’ve made several times is our taro millet vegetable burger recipe or my taro rice veggie burgers. My newest favorite way to use taro: Taro Carrot Banana Muffins
I also found these recipes while doing a few searches.
I developed this healthy cauliflower cheddar soup recipe while visiting the mainland. Like so many of my recipes, Adam bugged me for months to make him cauliflower cheese soup. I finally came through for him. This recipe comes out savory and super creamy. I don’t drink milk or use cream so unlike many recipes for this type of soup I didn’t add any extra dairy beyond the cheese. This soup is great for cheesy soup lovers who cannot tolerate the lactose in many types of cheese but can tolerate cheddar. It is also gluten-free and can be prepared vegetarian.
And yes, I know first hand that cauliflower isn’t easy to grow in the tropics. However, some talented farmers and gardeners are able pull off small crops and small heads in parts of the islands. But in the store they are largely unaffordable costing up to $10 for a head of organic cauliflower. Hopefully our talented farmers will get better at growing and we’ll be able to enjoy more of them in Hawaii.
Taro or Kalo is a Hawaiian/Polynesian staple root crop. It can also be found in many places of the world. It is usually a light-medium purple in color, and has a starchy and uniquely earthy flavor. The corms (root balls), stems and leaves can all be eaten. All of these plant parts need to be cooked for a long period of time to prevent serious irritation: the leaves and stems need to be cooked for at least 45 minutes in pressure cooker, cooking the taro root or corm in a pot takes 3-4 x as long (see note 1 & 2).
Many traditional dishes made are with kalo. In Hawaiian culture the most popular are poi (a fermented mashed taro root) and kulolo (a dessert made of mostly taro and coconut milk). However, recently in tropical locales, restaurants and home cooks are developing their version of the taro burger. Maui Taro Burgers is the first large scale commercial source to make it into whole food and health food stores throughout the state of Hawaii. So I am on the mission to perfect my own taro burger recipe.
large taro cormTaro LeavesTaro Huli to replant
This recipe is still under construction. I’ve made it 2x now with similar delicious results. Please provide comments and helpful tips : )
Taro millet garden vegetable burger recipe
yield: 15-20 veggie patties
3 cups cooked and mashed taro
1 cup dry millet, cooked
1 1/2 cups flour (e.x. spelt) for mixing in dough and another 1+ cup for dusting burgers (about 3 cups total, can make this gluten free if you use a comparable gluten free flour).
2 eggs beaten
1/2 onion, 2 stalks celery, 2 small carrots diced fine, 1/2 cup diced red pepper, 4 medium garlic cloves
handful chopped parsley and basil
2 teaspoons salt
Black pepper to taste
1-2 tablespoons non-gmo soy sauce or tamari
Several tablespoons of refined coconut oil
steps for cooking and preparing the taro/kalo
Wash and peel kalo/taro, cut into large pieces (the size of palm is fine, 1-2 inch thick) and place in pressure cooker with water 1 inch covering the kalo.
Bring to pressure (about 10 minutes on high), reduce heat to simmer (low-medium) and cook about 45 minutes until soft
let cool 2o minutes and then release pressure, once cool enough to handle drain water and mash either by hand, or by blender (I use an immersion blender for easy clean up and low waste).
steps for preparing veggie burger batter
In the meantime, sauté onion, celery, carrots, red pepper in olive oil until soft. Once cooked add herbs and wilt. remove from heat
In a bowl combine eggs, 1 cup flour, mashed taro, and sautéed veggies, add salt and pepper, and 1-2 tablespoons soy sauce (we use non-gmo, organic tamari).
Fold in millet. At this point the batter will be loose. You can add in a little more flour if it is very very loose, but don’t over do it because you will dust them in a lot of flour in the next step.
Pour about 1/2 cup of dusting flour onto plate. Plop a large spoonful of batter into pile of flour and cover it, then gently pick it up and toss in your hands to create a patty. Place immediately and carefully into hot pan with good amount of refined coconut oil.
Add more flour to the dusting plate as necessary, and continue to add the patties to the pan. Fry on medium (or medium to low heat) for about 5 minutes on each side. The outside will develop a nice, golden brown crust. After frying they may still be a little mushy inside. If you prefer them more firm you can transfer your batch to the oven. Bake on 300-350 degrees F for 30 or so minutes.
Cool and stack in-between wax paper for best storage results. You can freeze for a few months.
In general, the taro refers to the widely variable species named, Colocasia esculenta (i.e. edible in latin), which are grown primarily for its roots or corms, and then its leaves. Taro is related to ornamental plants like Xanthosoma and Caladium, and is often mistaken for elephant ear. elephant ear has a similar leaf and root shape but the root grow more above ground and is skinner and the shape of the “heart” in the leaf is more disjointed. Elephant ear may have been considered a famine food as it needs to be boiled for many hours before it is safe to eat.
This truly tropical guava passionfruit green smoothie recipe is the perfect combination of sweet, sour, creamy and packed with healthy fat, fiber and vitamins. White guava and passionfruit (lilikoi) star in this smoothie – get more than half of your daily servings of fruits and veggies in this delicious smoothie.
guava passionfruit green smoothie recipe
Yield: About 6 cups
1 large head of lettuce
4 stalks of celery
1 medium avocado
2 passionfruits (pulp only)
1 large white guava (peel the first 1/4 inch and include the rest of the pulp) – you can use pink guava but it will probably effect the color of your green smoothie).
2-3 medium apple bananas
1-2 cups water
5 ice cubes
Start with lettuce in the blender, then add celery and avocado and water
Blend until incorporated.
Then add passionfruit, guava, banana and ice.
Blend for 50 seconds on high until the seeds from the passionfruit and guava are well broken up and smoothie is plenty smooth.
Smooth and savory, this recipe has the slightest sweetness from the rep pepper, carrot and squash and a tiny bit of texture from the fresh coconut. This coconut red pepper squash soup is packed with beta-carotene, vitamin A, and vitamin C, along with healthy fats from coconut and fiber from all the veggies.
This recipe features fresh coconut flesh, not the creamy coconut milk or the sweetened coconut flakes. Fresh coconut flesh. Coconuts come from the cocos nucifera palm and grow very well in tropical low-mid elevations. One tree can produce as up to 150 nuts per year. One medium size nut and its water can provide an average sized person with almost all of the daily required vitamins, minerals, and calories. Coconuts are truly a super food.
Coconuts have a lot of good fat, some carbohydrate, proteins and fiber. One 100g piece of mature coconut meat has: 354 Calories, 9 grams of fiber, 33.5 grams of total fat, 3.3 grams of protein and 15 grams of carbohydrates. For example, coconuts contain copper, calcium, iron, manganese, magnesium, and zinc, potassium. Furthermore, coconuts are also rich in B-vitamins: folates, riboflavin, niacin, thiamin, and pyridoxine. Additionally, coconut contains Lauric acid, which increases good-HDL cholesterol and protect the arteries by preventing blood vessel blockages.
On our farm we already have 6 coconut palms fruiting and we are getting ready to plant 35 more dwarf coconut trees. Stayed tuned for many many future fresh coconut recipes.
Coconut red pepper squash soup recipe
Servings: 6, 8 ounce cups
1 small winter squash (about 2 cups cooked flesh)
2 medium carrots
2 stalks of celery
1 large red pepper or several small ones
flesh of 1 young coconut (about 1/4 in thick) or 1/2 coconut
6 cups of water
salt and pepper
Cook squash and remove about 2 cups of flesh
Then, add squash and roughly chopped veggies (save coconut for last)
Boil the soup until all veggies are tender, 20-30 minutes
Let cool, add salt and pepper
Once the soup is a bit cooler, add coconut and use immersion blender or regular blender.
This cucumber cabbage juice recipe has just enough cabbage to help cleanse and enough cucumber and apple to brighten the flavor. I know it sounds kinda ehhhhh… but cabbage juice has many many health benefits and the cucumber and the apple in this juice mask any cabbage flavor. It’s best to make and drink this juice fresh as cabbage juice tends to put off a funky taste and smell if it sits around too long. Instead this juice is refreshing and feels good.
Cabbage juice has a lot of Vitamin C, E, K, folate and potassium. It also has high sulhpur and chlorine content and a lot of iodine. This combination helps to clean the stomach and the intestinal tract (only when it is raw and without salt). It is advisable to start with smaller amounts of cabbage juice and watch how you body reacts because it is such a powerful cleanser. Gas may form in intestines because the cleansing properties of the juice are acting on and dissolving waste/toxic matter. Cabbage juice has been know to relief ulcers and constipation and clear up skin. Research suggest s that the active ingredient in cabbage juice that clear up ulcers is Vitamin U. It is also thought to help: bladder, colitis, kidney disorders, thyroid, blood pressure, bronchitis, asthma, hair loss.
My cucumber juice recipe with parsley, apple and lemon is so refreshing on a hot summer day. It’s perfect for incorporating into your weekly routine, and additionally great for detoxing. I know it doesn’t sound very tropical but both cucumbers and parsley grow year round here in Hawai‘i. Right now I’m on a brief juice/spring water/tea fast. I also have abundant amounts of cucumber and parsley so I decided to this juice combination a try. Below I have listed more information about the beneficial health effects of this cucumber parsley juice recipe.
Benefits of cucumber juice
The cucumber juice will re-hydrate you and is a wonderful natural diuretic. Hair and nail growth is also promoted because cucumber has a lot of silicon and sulphur and other trace elements. Cucumber juice also has a lot of potassium which helps maintain healthy skin and flexibility in the muscles. Additionally, it can promote weight loss, help with acne, arthritis, eczema, fever, kidney disorders, etc. Also, cucumber is a good source of folate, Vitamin C and K.
Benefits of parsley juice
Parsley is an herb and the juice is highly concentrated. It should not be taken in doses more than 1-2 ounces. It contains a lot of chlorophyll, (esp Vitamins A and C), calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium and sulfur. Moreover, the juice of parsley is very cleansing, and it has been known to help adrenal and thyroid function, blood vessel health, the kidneys, bladder, the liver, and the eyes. Parsely helps with the female endocrine system and can help relieve cramps. It also helps with weight loss (like many juices).