Chef Kuan, Bao-You of Taiwan during a cooking demonstration at the Palau Community College’s Tourism and Hospitality School of Excellence building on December 11, 2018. (Rhealyn C. Pojas)
Do you want to see taro serve in ways you have probably never imagined before? Then hop on to the Taro Processing Workshop hosted by the Taiwan Embassy where different dishes and desserts are made with a dash of taro or two.
There is no denying it. Taro is an essential part of a Palauan’s daily life. But despite it being widely known only to this part of the world and its neighboring countries, the crop brings a universal message – that what is widely used in this part of the globe has a huge space in the world’s culinary industry.
MingDao University Assistant Professor and Chef Kuan, Bao-You, an award-winning chef in Taiwan, came all the way to Palau to conduct the free Taro Processing Workshop on December 10 and 11 at the Palau Community College’s (PCC) Tourism and Hospitality School of Excellence building. The workshop was one of the series of activities conducted by the Taiwan Embassy to promote taro.
Chef Kuan said that the main reason why they are using taro in all the dishes they prepared was that it is one of the main dishes in Palau and they wanted to show to the people that they can be creative with it.
“We want to show to the people how they can use taro in different ways,” the chef said.
During the two-day workshop, participants get a firsthand experience preparing and cooking taros made into a dessert and different dishes with the aid of Chef Kuan.
The chef said that he wanted to use taro with other ingredients to show to the people that there are different ways where taro can be used in cooking and also to help promote that “taro is not just a taro.”
Vincent P.C. Yang, leader of the Taiwan Technical Mission (TTM) to Palau, also said that aside from taro being a traditional crop in Palau, it is also an important part of Palauns’ culture, hence, the reason for using it as one of the main ingredients during the workshops.
Among the dishes prepared for the demonstration were taro pork ribs with pickle chili, steamed taro cake, taro minced pork rice, and taro sushi. Previously, they also made gelato with taro flavor. Indeed, given the lineup of the dishes mentioned, it was evident that taro was the star of the show.
Chef Kuan also shared that basic cooking practices such as the cutting of the ingredients and the heating could all make a big difference in producing good-quality and delicious food.
Those who are interested about the workshop may contact TTM at 488-6557 or 544-1616. (Rhealyn C. Pojas)