Yes! I did it again! Killer taro burger recipe. These are 100% gluten free if you make sure to use Tamari or Gluten-free soy sauce and gluten-free Worcestershire sauce. They are moist but not too mushy and extremely flavorful. I’m sure there is a way to use “flax eggs”and omit the Worcestershire if you want to make them vegan. But I since I’m not vegan.. I feel no real need to mess with this recipe at this point.
The taro quinoa burger recipe below was designed to be a BULK recipe with the purpose of using up a good amount of taro and then vacuum sealing the taro burgers.
This recipe is also even quicker and easier to make if you have pre-shredded carrots! I usually grow carrots and harvest a large amount for later use in veggies burgers and muffins etc. The shredded carrots I also vacuum seal and freeze.
3 ½ pounds shredded cooked taro (kalo)
3 cups cooked quinoa (about 1 ½ cups dry quinoa)
3 cups shredded raw carrots
1 large onion minced
6 garlic cloves (minced is ok but pressed is best), or 2 tablespoons already prepared minced garlic
2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
4 or ¼ cup tablespoons soy sauce
approx 1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
5-10 dashes of hot sauce
Things that are easier to prep ahead of time
shredded cooked taro
Cook minced onion with 1 tablespoon oil (I use organic coconut oil), once they are translucent, add garlic, carrots, Italian seasoning, salt, worchestire, soy, and hot sauce.
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.