Monday, June 04, 2007

E is for Eddoe Mash


Our adventures with our new friends the Eddoes continued. It's interesting how quickly children will get used to a new food. But then if you think about it, so much is new to children, the hardest hurdle is probably the first recipe, the first taste. I am sure that one reason why the Great Big Veg Challenge seems to be gradually taking away Freddie's fears about vegetables is that the pace is very gentle and very deliberate. He is given the opportunity to get to know a new vegetable, get used to its taste as a single entity and make up his own mind if he likes it or not. And he knows that whatever happens, we move on. The baked eddoes had been delicious so I struck whilst the iron was hot and gave them another simple dish of mashed eddoe. Alexandra, who loves cooking, helped me. We first washed the Eddoes and then placed them in boiling water in their skins. We boiled them, as you would a potato, for about 15 to 20 minutes, checking with a fork to see when they were soft. When they were ready, we took them out with a ladle and let them cool a little on a plate till they were cool enough to touch. Then I carefully peeled off their hairy jackets to reveal this grey-white flesh. In a bowl, Alexandra mashed them with a generous knob of butter and a quarter cup of milk and seasoned them with salt and pepper. We served it with sausages. Sausages and Eddoe Mash. That is one way to introduce new vegetables to children; team them up with something very familiar. Freddie and Alex were delighted with this meal. "This mash is more filling than potato" thought Freddie. But that didn't stop them from scraping the bowl so clean, it could have bypassed the dishwasher. It wasn't a pretty sight.
Now that we know the Eddoe, he is going to be a regular visitor to our kitchen. A new friend. And just for the record, I have seen no evidence of a tendency to slimyness, at least not in our home where the Eddoe will always be welcome.
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  1. Ooh, come over to North East London and you can find eddoes in the market and various local shops not just in the exotic section of a supermarket.

    Depending on where you come from 'eddoe' can refer to a different root veg - similar I think in taste/texture but much, much smaller - you can hold one in the palm of your hand.

    On another note, apparently a chanterelle mushroom is also known as an egg mushroom - that might give you an extra 'e' veg - rather gourmet as well, though I'm not sure that it's chanterelle mushroom season, maybe you could find some dried ones.

  2. Cal - thanks
    We are going to be buying a lot more eddoes in the future

  3. Evie (5) and her mummy Victoria have been reading about your challenge with interest. We tried the courgette quesadillas and the weekend and they were a great success with whole family. Evie was proud of herself because she thought she didn't like courgette. We shall buy an Eddoe next time we go shopping.

    Evie would also like to tell Freddie that although she isn't keen on fish, we are going to try as many fish recipes as possible to find some she likes. So far prawns and smoked salmon have been the most popular. Think we'll try something cheaper next!

  4. Apparently "eddo" is a West African word for any taro, now used in the West Indies for the small subsidiary cormel of the classic taro, colocasia esculenta. The creole name for the main central corm gives you another "D": dasheen. (This from the delightful Oxford Companion to Food, edited by Alan Davidson, former British ambassador to Laos, author of the once-banned novel "Something Quite Big" and authority on seafood, among several other things).

  5. What do you do about the veggies that you really love? Do you have them more often? Is it hard to decide which ones to keep having as you're finding so many or do you sort of rotate them? Sorry - full of questions today. These eddoes do sound good. Don't think I've ever had it. Amanda

  6. Amanda - In between the blogging veggies we eat all the other ones Freddie and the rest of us have learned to love. So asparagus, artichoke, corn, savoy cabbage for example are now regulars in his diet. I also feel its important once you find something someone loves, to make it into a regular feature, otherwise there will be no lasting change. Its a long long process to turn a veg phobic round!

    Victoria and Eve - Thank you so much for your comments. Freddie is pleased that Eve loves the quesadillas. Remember that you can use the quesadillas method to include other vegetables like maybe grated carrot, grilled aubergines etc.
    Paul - thank you for that. I think I need to invest in this book asap!

  7. I thought that eddoe looked familiar!
    I did a little searching, and I learned that it is in fact the same vegetable that is called malanga in the Caribbean. My grandmothers used to make me "pure de malanga" (very similar to your eddoe mash) when I was growing up; for me, it's the definition of comfort food.

    It's also excellent as a garlicky soup called crema de malanga. I think I have a recipe at home; if I can find it, I'll definitely pass it along!

  8. Hi I think your way of making good nutrition fun is wonderful.

    A number of people in the supermarket mentioned slime. You have not met this because you are cooking the eddoes in their jackets. If you were to peel first you would see the slime. If you do decide to do this oil your hands or wear gloves because some people are allergic to this 'slime'.


We always love to read your comments - thank you