Taro Chips or chips za taro in Swahili, are a popular snack or starter in Tanzania along with Plantain chips. We enjoyed them at our safari camp on the Serengeti. I had the privilege of going behind the scenes in the camp kitchen and decided I would use the recipes I learned there for our Tanzanian meal.
Taro root is a popular tuber in many parts of the world and it is considered a resistant starch, full of fiber and vitamins, so it has many health benefits and good for your gut. Of course you can bake them for a healthier alternative.
A few people get a throat itch after eating Taro but if you soak it water or boil it beforehand, it eliminates it for most people. This recipe does not call for boiling so slice them and soak them for at least 4 hours before you fry or bake them, if you are concerned about it.
I absolutely recommend using a mandolin to get nice even thin slices. Another tip is to soak the taro root in some vinegar before you peel them as some people also get itchy hands. You can use a vegetable peeler to remove the skin or a paring knife whichever you prefer.
Did you know that Tanzania is home to the highest mountain in Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro and is also home to the lowest, the floor of Lake Tanganyika is 1,155 feet below sea level. If you would like to learn more be sure to check out “Our Journey to Tanzania”.
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- 1 lb. taro root peeled and sliced thinly
- 1/2 cup oil for frying +/-
- 1 clove garlic minced
- salt and pepper to taste
- Peel the taro root, slice thinly using a mandolin. Place in water and set aside for about 4 hours
- Drain the Taro root slices and pat dry
- heat cooking oil in a frying pan or deep fryer over medium high heat, add taro root to oil and cook until golden brown, flip if necessary depending on how much oil you have in the pan.
- Remove and sprinkle with salt, pepper and minced garlic clove.
- Serve warm