Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Waffling Leftovers: Mashed Taro

Last week, as part of my Waffling Leftovers series, I discussed waffling leftover mashed potatoes.  We discovered, that yes, leftover mashed potatoes (and potato puree) do waffle ok, although not my greatest succcesses.

This week, I tried something similar: leftover mashed taro.  I expected similar results to the potatoes, but actually, taro worked much better.  One of my best discoveries, even better than waffled leftover pizza (although that remains the favorite of both Ojan and my mom), and just marginally less awesome than leftover cheesy grits.

So, leftover mashed taro: Will it waffle?  ZOMG yes.
The Original: Mashed Taro.
The original version was served warm, traditionally.  I adore taro, and this was fantastic.  Some chunks were left in, which I liked for a bit of texture, but it was still fairly creamy.  I think lots of oil was added.  Really amazing in its original form.

Leftover Mashed Taro.
So I kept leftovers.  For my experiments, I started with a container full of cold, lumpy, sad looking mashed taro.  No different than leftover mashed potatoes, besides the lovely purple hue.

I plopped some into the waffle iron, set for 350 degrees.  No modifications, no crusting.
Uh, uh ...
As always, I grew nervous after a few minutes when I opened the lid.  I didn't crust the taro with anything.  Would it possibly hold together?  The mashed potatoes didn't ...

I lifted the lid gingerly, and found it completely falling apart.  Doh!  I started scheming about what I'd crust the next version in, but left this one going a little longer, finger crossed that time would just fix it.
Almost Done!
And a few minutes later, when I peeked again, it looked like a waffle.  Yes!  In general, I've found that if you just trust it to release and come together, it will.  (Although, clearly, this is not always the case, and you can wind up with a burnt mess if you take it too far).
Perfectly Crisp.
This came out ... perfect.  Note to self: 350 degrees setting, ~6 minutes.

The outside was crispy, like the most perfect potato pancake or hash browns.  It didn't burn at all, it just turned a bit golden brown.  I intentionally made the patty extra thick, so the inside would stay soft and creamy, and indeed it did.

I love taro in any way, and mashed taro is comforting and delicious in its own right, but this was even better than the original.  Major success.
Oh yeah, toppings!
Because I couldn't resist, and I had more left to play with, I turned my next version into dessert, and added a dollop of whipped cream (which promptly melted) and a drizzle of maple syrup for sweetness.

They were tasty additions, but not actually necessary in any way.  It was great plain, and a savory take with a dollop of crème fraîche (and a scoop of caviar?) would have also worked wonderfully.  So many possibilities.
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