Alu / Tera | अळू / तेरा Taro Colocasia esculenta

Other Names

  • Local Name: Alu / Tera / अळू / तेरा
  • Common Name: Taro
  • Botanical Name: Colocasia esculenta

Status & Habitat

  • Habitat: Herb
  • Occurrence: Forests, Mountainous Open Areas, Rocks
  • Season of Availability: July - September
  • Geography: South and Southeast Asia
  • Method of Propagation: Corms or offshoots
  • Part used for Propagation: Corms or offshoots

Edible Parts

  • Edible Parts: Leaves, Tuber and Stem
  • Can be Eaten Raw: No

Method of Consumption

  • Raw: No
  • Ripe: No
  • Both Raw & Ripe: No
  • Dangerous Form to Consume: N/A
  • As Food: The tubers are boiled before cooking; Leaves can be steamed or cooked directly
  • As Medicine: Boiled taro tuber helps with acidity, while the corm is used for body aches. A decoction of taro peel treats diarrhea and it's also used as a galactagogue to enhance breast milk production in young mothers.
  • Cooking Method: - The tubers are boiled before cooking.
    - Leaves can be steamed or cooked directly.
  • Preservation / Curing Technique: Stems are peeled, sundried and stored.
  • Does Require Another Plants to be cooked together: No
  • Souring Agents Required: Tamarind

Nutritional & Medicinal Benefits

  • Nutritional Benefit: Rich in vitamin A and thiamine.
  • Medicinal Benefit: Helps with diarrhea, bodyache, acidity and breast milk production.

Tribal Wisdom

  • Tribal Wisdom: 
    - Leaves of Taro are eaten during the season.
    - Boiled Tuber is used for acidity.
    - Tera corm/tuber is used for body aches.
    - Decoction of taro peel is used to cure diarrhea.
    - Sometimes used as a galactagogue to increase breast milk production
    in young mothers.

Recipes / Usage

  • Tribal Recipe / Usage: 
    1) Patvadya:
    - Wash Tera leaves thoroughly with water and keep aside.
    - Make a thin paste of chickpea flower, rice flour, crushed garlic and green chilli paste, turmeric powder, red chilli powder and salt.
    - Apply the paste on the backside of leaves
    - Roll the leaves to make small round logs and steam cook them
    for 15 mins
    - Once steamed, serve as is or cut into thick slices and shallow fry

    2) Dal with Tera Leaves:
    - Cook 1/2 cup Chana or Toor Dal with cut Tera leaves and water.
    - Heat 1 tbsp of oil, add mustard seeds, 1 medium chopped onion, 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder, 1.5 tsps chilli powder and satuee well.
    - Add the above tadka to the dal with Tera leaves and cover. - Simmer on low heat for a few minutes till all flavours blend. Add hot water if dal is too thick.

    3) Pakora:
    - Mix 1/2 cup besan and 1/2 cup rice flour. Add chilli powder, turmeric powder, salt (as per taste) and cut Tera leaves.
    - Mix all dry ingredients properly.
    - Add water to make a smooth batter.
    - Drop the batter in hot oil in clumps to make deep fried pakoras.

Image Gallery

Alu / Tera | अळू / तेरा Taro Colocasia esculenta

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