Hawaii Eats: Purple Taro with Coconut

Happy New Year everyone! I am so blessed to say that I am spending the first few days of 2012 in one of the most beautiful and peaceful places on earth….my home….Kona, Hawaii.
I really want to share with you every move I make, every wave I encounter and every plumeria I smell…so bare with me as I gather my thoughts and attempt to put it all together.
My parents have a beautiful fruitful garden, multiplying with night blooming jasmine, fresh organic lemons, tomatoes, pineapple, passion fruit (AKA lilikoi)…and what we are harvesting today, Purple Taro.
Taro is a hearty starchy plant, where both the root and leaves are edible. The leaves were once used to carry water because there were no bags or baskets available, so the sturdy leaves would do the job of a water jug. Purple taro is commonly used in taro chips or poi (the starchy purple paste you see in luaus), and the leaves can be eaten alone or wrapped around the pork meat in laulau. In this case, we’re just going to cut the taro in big chunks and cook it with coconut milk….yum!!
But first…let me show you a few pics of harvesting the plant.

Digging up the root from the ground.
 Almost out!
Ta dah!
Beautiful, isn’t it? This is the easiest dish to make and what my step-dad grew up on! So all the credit goes to him!
1 Purple Taro, cleaned and cut into big chunks.
2 cans of Lite coconut milk
1 Tb sugar
1tbl dried coconut (optional)
1) Combine all ingredients (except dried coconut) together in a deep pot and cook on medium-heat until taro is tender. About 1 hour.
2) Sprinkle with dried coconut.
Enjoy and Aloohaaa!


  1. says

    Woah never seen how taro grows before! So interesting. This dish sounds awesome – I’ve got to get my hands on taro – I’ve gone too long without it : )
    have you ever had taro ice cream or frozen yogurt? That’s really good too : )
    Vicky recently posted..Banana Nutella SmoothieMy Profile

  2. ku'ualohapau'ole says

    thats actually a Cambodian recipe. cant remember the name but it translates to taro in caramel sugar if i remember correctly

  3. BTC says

    For this recipe, what is the weight of 1 Purple Taro? I bought one today but I’m not sure if it’s big enough.

    • SamanthaSamantha says

      It was probably about 1-2lbs if I remember correctly. It filled a medium sized pit. Just make sure the coconut milk will just about cover the taro Enjoy! :)

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