Alu leaves/Taro Leaves are are native to south-east Asia. Fried and steamed alu vadi recipe has its origins in Maharastra, India. Being a south Indian, Keralite to be specific, my mom never knew how to prepare Alu Vadi or taro leaf rolls. Thanks to our Aamchi Mumbai neighbors and her keen interest in cooking, she picked it up and passed the recipe on to me. Mumbai is a melting pot of cultures from all over India and the way people gel with each other is amazing. Here you get to savor different cuisines, both local and global.
Now coming back to the taro leaf roll recipe, check out the basic ingredients
Ingredients for Taro Leaves Roll/Alu Vadi
Alu leaves/Taro leaves – 10
For the batter:
Chick pea flower/gram flower(besan) – 3/4 cup
Tamarind pulp – 2 tsp
Crushed jaggery – 1 tsp
Asafoetida – a pinch
Red chilly powder – 1/2 Tsp( as per taste)
Turmeric powder – 1 pinch
Sesame seeds – 1 tsp
Salt as per taste
Sufficient oil for frying
How to prepare Alu Vadi or Rolls of Taro Leaves
Wash and clean taro leaves. Cut the stems. Prepare a thick batter of the above mentioned ingredients. Take a taro leaf, spread a layer of batter evenly all over. Place another leaf above this and spread the batter over it. Repeat this for all the 10 taro leaves till you have a ten layered spread. Roll this from the base to the tip. Steam this for 20-25 mins.
Once it cools down, slice it into rolls. Heat some oil in a frying pan. Fry these taro leaf rolls/alu vali till nice,crisp and golden brown, on a medium to high flame.
Taro leaf rolls are ready to eat! I prefer to eat these rolls with a hot cup of tea and without any chutneys or sauces. Chutneys and sauces will overpower the flavor of the rolls with their own distinct flavor.
Note: Taro leaves can be itchy if not cooked well! The tamarind in the batter is precisely used for removing the itchiness of the leaves. The itchy leaves can be distinguished from the non-itchy leaves! Just ask the local vegetable vendor! The itchy ones have a purplish tinge on the stem and small hair like strands on them!