Colocasia roots, taro, sataimo or arbi is a simple humble root vegetable. The plant is also commonly known as “elephant ears”, due to the shape of the broad leaves. It is grown for both its leaves and roots. Colocasia roots are eaten all over East and South Asia, so you can find them at Chinese, Korean, Japanese, and South Asian groceries. This simple pan fried colocasia dish is a crispy delight. Colocasia absorbs Indian spices very well and you will end up asking for another helping!

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 mins
Serves: 2
  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil
  • 3-4 pieces of colocasia roots
  • 1/2 tsp carom seeds
  • ½ tsp chilli powder or more if you like it hotter
  • 1.5 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp mango powder
  • Salt to taste

  1. Put the colocasia roots into a pressure cooker and add the minimum level of water required.
  2. Pressure cook for 6-7 minutes. Remove from heat and allow the pressure to drop. Remember that we don’t want to fully cook the vegetable as it can get mushy.
  3. Take them out, allow to cool and peel the skin gently.
  4. Cut into halves and keep aside.
  5. Heat oil in a grill pan and add the carom seeds. Allow to splutter for half a minute and then add the colocasia pieces to it.  
  6. Sprinkle chilli powder and about 1 teaspoon salt all over the pieces.
  7. Cover and cook for 5 minutes on low to medium heat.
  8. After 5 minutes, uncover and add the remaining spices, coriander powder and mango powder.
  9. Flip over the pieces, cover and cook on the other side for another 5 minutes.
  10. After 10 minutes of covered cooking, brown the colocasia for another 10 minutes on medium heat. Keep it uncovered for the last 10 minutes allowing it to get nice and crispy.
  11. Make sure you keep turning them over gently to allow the spices to get well absorbed on both sides.
  12. By now a nice brown coating should have formed on both sides.
  13. It should be finger licking good! Serve hot.

Jovi’s Notes
Sometimes, you may need to keep the colocasia covered for a longer time to ensure it gets cooked properly. Cooking times for this vegetable vary by country.

In some people, the colocasia root can cause skin irritation while peeling. It is best to use gloves while touching the hairy skin of the vegetable.