Taro is one of my favorite root vegetables. In Lebanon, there are many regional variations to cook it, for instance there is a recipe for taro and chickpeas stew that was a staple in my dad’s side of the family, but my mom’s side of the family knew nothing about. They lived about an hour apart and belong geographically to the same region!
The recipe that I am sharing today though, is in the realm of fast food if you think of it, and the best part is that you can make it with potatoes too. It is simple yet zesty due to the addition of lemon and sumac.
There is something appealing to me about the taste of sumac, tangy and earthy, that makes it very distinct from lemon.
My only recommendation here is to pay attention to the amount of dressing you put on the potatoes, because unlike the taros, they soak it up like a sponge, and you might end up with a very sour result.
I did not specify the number of the taros in the ingredients, because it all depends on the size of the root you buy. We got a huge one at the Asian market a few months ago and I separated it into three batches that I froze. I used one of these batches in today’s recipe.
You also want to pound the garlic not crush it, there is a different taste that comes out of pounding garlic. A mortar and pestle is a regret-free investment.
Taro (Potatoes) with Sumac
- 2 medium potatoes
- 2 Tbsp Lemon
- 2 cloves garlic
- ½ cup water
- 1 Tbsp Sumac
- 1 cup canola oil for frying
- Cut the taros in thick slices, you need about 8 to 10 slices. You can use a knife or a mandolin. Sprinkle with salt.
- Line the taro pieces on a baking sheet and cook in the oven for about 10 minutes at 350° F (~177°C).
- Cut the potatoes in thick slices, keeping or discarding the skin. You need 10 to 12 pieces. Sprinkle with salt.
- Pound the garlic with a pinch of salt. Mix in the lemon, the water and the sumac. Set aside.
- Heat the oil and fry the taro, then the potatoes in batches, till golden. Lay on paper towels to absorb excess oil.
- Move the taros and the potatoes to separate serving plates and drizzle with the dressing.