Indian Taro Root fry (Arbi, Colocasia,Cheppankizhangu) Recipe
My mom makes THE BEST taro root fry. It is very fondly known among the Tamilians in India as Cheppankizhangu /Seppankilangu Varuval. I have tried to capture my mom's touch so many times. While my husband likes every version of mine, somehow I am NEVER satisfied with it! But I guess that's how it is with mom's cooking! Even if you try the same recipe, it just lacks something - guess its the mom's touch! I have this memory of eating it with onion sambar, nice tomato rasam and then burping away the rest of the afternoon to glory! One can never have enough of it. But after coming here and falling into the addictive of world of Ovens, I have this obsession of trying to use Ovens for everything - yes, in the name of eating healthy of course! But then well, I just like the Oven way too much! I have tried many ways of making my mom's taro root low calorie! (what to do! Eating healthy is a common word now in everyone's mouth nowadays, isnt it?) But the lower calorie tastes just like that - LOW CALORIE! Its a total blah, I tell you.
Indian Taro Root fry (Arbi, Colocasia,Cheppankizhangu) Recipe
My idea of low calorie food is that it still tastes delicious without letting the taster know that it is a low calorie BS that's being served. So recently, I finally managed to re create the exact dish (sure a little different from the original but way better than my other low calorie versions) with so much less oil that I was screaming 'Eureka' as if I made some major breakthroughs in the scientific world! My version looks and tastes almost the same as my mom's version that I was overwhelmed! But what takes like at least 10 tbsp of oil (at least) for making that yummy crispy surface for the taro root - took only about 2-3 tsp of oil for me! Can you believe that? The beauty of the broiler is something to be admired! OK lemme stop my blahs and continue to the recipe. Indian Taro Root fry (Arbi, Colocasia,Cheppankizhangu) Recipe The measurements are approximate and highly taste buds based. Add as much chilli powder you want! ;) Get wild with the recipe. And yes! My mom never slices the Taro root - she keeps them whole to make those fries and we (which is to say my sis and I) used to call it "mutton chops" and irritate my mom! She will then refuse to eat it after we call it that! ;) We were OK to call it with whatever name as long as someone actually did not make us eat real mutton chops.;)
  • Cook time:
  • Prep time:
  • Serves: 3 people
  • About 12-14 Taro Root (small ones not the BIG gargantuan sized Chinese ones!)
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp split black gram (urad dal)
  • 1 tsp chilli powder (or as per taste)
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • salt to taste
  • about 3 tsp vegetable oil
1. Wash the taro root (seppankilangu) in cold water. Place them in a steamer and steam for approx. 10 minutes.
2. or until its fork tender yet firm. Take immense care not to make it mushy! Mushy - not that good! It is better even it is little undercooked since broiling will cook the taro root further. We want it steamed just enough to be able to make the peeling of the skin easier.
3. Cool the steamed Taro root for some time. Though its not totally necessary (if you can handle the heat that is!), I find that cooling it for some times makes peeling a dream. That way the skin comes off easily without pulling all the flesh too along with it. See the picture? Can you see how beautifully it comes? Helps to retain its shape :)
4. In a zip lock bag, add 2 tsp of oil (or see if the 1-1/2 tsp of oil is sufficient, I will try it the next time), chilli powder and turmeric. Mix well. Now add the Taro root to the bag. Give it a good toss until its coated well with the spices and oil.
5. Take a baking sheet. Cover it with Aluminium foil (helps so much with the cleaning!), grease it lightly (not really necessary if you like scraping the roasted bits of Taro in the sheet ;)) and place the coated taro root on it.
6. Switch on the Broiler at its High setting and place the baking sheet below it. Now the time taken greatly depends on your Oven and taste buds. The more crispy you want, the more you keep it. I think I broiled it for like about 20-30 minutes until the surface was all charred and roasted.  Make sure to keep tossing the Taro root so that it roasts on all the sides at regular intervals.
7. See below how it looks after it roasts. I did not grease the foil, hence little of the Taro root got stuck to the foil while I was tossing them around.
8. But trust me, it was not a great loss! The surface though well roasted can be a little dry. To rectify that, I did the next best thing.
9. Now in the remaining 1 tsp of oil, i tempered the rest of the ingredients (mustard seeds - once popped, add black split gram). You can add curry leaves and asafoetida too if you like. This little oil in the end makes them taste like the real roasted ones. I mean sometimes LOOKS can do real world of good for the eater you know ;)
10. I tossed the broiled Taro root to the skillet, add salt to taste (or you can add the salt along with the turmeric,chilli powder while coating the taro root in the zip lock), gave it a quick stir so that the tempered ingredients gets coated on the taro root.
And then serve them Pronto! We enjoyed these with Onion Sambar, Mysore Rasam and steamed rice! Bliss! So Mutton chops *ahem* Oven roasted Taro root anyone????? Indian Taro Root fry (Arbi, Colocasia,Cheppankizhangu) Recipe

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6 min Mor Kulambu (OPOS©) By DK on Sep 4, 2018

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2 Member Reviews

By swetha on Jan 6, 2012

It came out great. The texture was perfect, crunchy on oustide and well cooked on inside - all this with only 2 Tbsp oil. Bravo to 'Chef in You' for a great recipe and great step-by-step instructions.

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By Dolly on May 18, 2010

When I read the recipe Taro root low calorie, I felt like flying in the air.\"smiley\"

Also realized how much I am missing my Mom's cooking . Though I cook many things here, always think of the mom's cooking. I totally agree with DK, that what ever we cook we will lack in a small point which is "Mom's touch".

I did this last week for Lunch. My Hubby was soooooooooooo happy. He loved it. It was little crisp on outside and soft inside.

Since I don't know about Broiler cooking, I kept this cooked Colocasia in the oven @ 400 oF for 20 min for roasting. It came out good.

Thanks Dhiviya \"angle\"



By Taro Root Substitute | Laatuasunnot on Feb 18, 2015

[…] Indian Baked Taro Root fry (Arbi, Colocasia … – Cool the steamed Taro root for some time. Though its not totally necessary (if you can handle the heat that is!), I find that cooling it for some times makes peeling …… […]

By AJM on Jan 20, 2014

Thanks for the great recipe! I was browsing around the south asian market near my house and saw a product in the bins called "edo." I am not having much luck finding recipes that include it. Is it a substitute for taro? completely different? Thanks! AJM --DK

By The Ninth Day of Christmas – Fried Chicken | Seasonally Vegan on Jan 9, 2014

[...] so I bought both determined to find a way to use the incorrect one.  I roasted them according to this recipe.  I left out the peppers and used the optional curry leaves, since I had some on hand.  They were [...]

By Tina on Apr 9, 2012

Hi DK, Thanks for sharing this recipe. I have a question regarding the taro root itself. I bought some recently but saw after i came home that it had little holes all over them. I was skeptical about using those after spotting those holes. Were they ok to use or was it infected with insects? Thanks again :wink:

By Ladi on Jan 14, 2012

Human Lover must have a broomstick up their hmmm :( We humans are not all like that :roll:

By Human Lover on Dec 28, 2011

//actually did not make us eat real mutton chops.;)// Hello! Thank you for sharing your mom's recipe. It is good to be a vegetarian. But you do not have to feel "superior" about it. Vegetarians like you in India are behind many crimes! So do not belabor about the superiority of vegism. Try to love all humans the same! Thanks!

LOL Human Lover :) Woke up on the wrong side of the bed did we? :) One thing I agree is about many "Vegetarians" all over the world (read "all over the world" - NOT Indians alone) harp about the superiority about being Vegetarians or in some cases Vegans. But I would ask you to rethink about generalizing your notion to all non meat eaters. My sentence was so harmless its very funny that you would choose to harp about it and read much much more than it deserves. It was mere statement to show my preference not necessarily advocating anything else. Take a chill pill! :)

By Erm's Photo Diary - Page 23 - - Weight Loss Support Forum on Sep 21, 2011

[...] plums, nectarine, mixed baby veggies. I had a go at a new way of healthy roasting that I found on this lady's site. Apparently eddoes are a variety of taro root or Colocasia, but as Ive never heard of [...]

By Produce in the bag for August 10 and 11! on Aug 9, 2011

[...] the adventurous among you:  Indian Baked Taro Root Fry The end product looks really really [...]

By New Items in the bag this week!! on May 2, 2011

[...] Roasted Taro Root This would be great using other vegetables as well. [...]

By Trying Out Taro « Here's the Dish on Mar 16, 2011

[...] Now even more intrigued by this food, I looked up recipes online and found one that I liked for fresh taro. I peeled and roasted the fresh taro (the small kind, not the giant taro root pieces) with herbs, spices, garlic, and olive oil, loosely following this recipe. [...]

By KD on Nov 29, 2010

I cut the arbi in smaller pieces, and added some salt and lime in the end. And had it like a snack. Delish

By VC on May 4, 2010

I tried it with potato. Came out surprisingly good. Thanks.

By Ania on May 3, 2010

I've never heard of this but looks so great I must try it one day.

By Swarna on Apr 30, 2010

:wink: Looks delicious. I tried to roast Taro once in oven was pretty good but i boiled it. never tried steaming it. Will try soon. Thanks

By Divya Vikram on Apr 27, 2010

Am definitely trying this! thanks for the recipe Dhiv!

By Anne on Apr 26, 2010

good Work. I hope my daughters will enjoy this recipe. I have written some similar recipe recently. Thanks for sharing.

By Veggie Belly on Apr 26, 2010

I love this method! Cheppangkizhangu makes me a bit itchy, but I still eat it because I love it! Yours looks scrumptious.

By Swapna on Apr 26, 2010

Love the way you present it!!

By akanksha on Apr 26, 2010

This looks awesome!!! We call it arbi. I add garam masala and coriander powder to spice it a bit. Steaming is a nice idea...I cook it in the cooker, and sometimes turn out to be mushy depending on the quality. :)

By caroline on Apr 26, 2010

I'm a very poor sleeper so while I lay there trying to fall asleep all I could think of was the different recipes i clicked through on your blog. lol! I opened one eye looked at the clock reading 3am and the first thought was, I have to find out where i can buy taro. This dish looks divine!

By CurryLeaf on Apr 26, 2010

Steaming does make it easier to remove the skin.Never tried whole taro.Looks delish :-P

By roopa on Apr 26, 2010

I am gonna try this next time, we used to make Taro chips, never heard about using the whole taro root, and the steamed peeling is excellent , never heard about it....thanks for sharing this wonderful idea :)

By tasteofbeirut on Apr 26, 2010

I cooked a stew with taro for the first time a while ago and I loved it!I am so glad you posted this recipe and I am learning thanks to you new ways of eating taro and cooking it too, steaming sounds easy!

By Shoba on Apr 26, 2010

I love the step by step photos.

By Minakshi on Apr 26, 2010

:-| excellent mom cooked a sabji of this taro root, but this looks different and taste will different too. i'll definitely try this.

By sayantani on Apr 25, 2010

never thought we can cook taro this way. thats a super scrumptious dish and that too low cal...thanks a ton for sharing this. looks splendid.

By Parita on Apr 25, 2010

Same pinch! I too try to bake most of the fried items in the name of healthy cooking :wink: We call it arbi and i have never had them baked but it looks so yumm, i am def gonna try :)

By Pavani on Apr 25, 2010

Looks super delicious. It's been a while I cooked taro root, will have to try ur version very soon.

By Cynthia on Apr 25, 2010

I know that this would taste better than roast potatoes. This sounds and looks heavenly!