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Dec 5, 2012 11:52 PM

Purple Taro in Somville/Camb/Boston?

I was so surprised that Super88 didn't have this the other day. Reliable doesn't have it. HMart does.
Has anyone seen it elsewhere? It has so much more flavor than non-purple taro.TIA.

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  1. I haven't looked for a while, but Market Basket in Somerville used to regularly carry 'malanga lila' in the bins near freezer section (near the yuca, plantains, etc). La Internacional near there is also worth a look and La Sultana Market certainly has malanga blanca, but not certain about the lila. I can't guarantee its the same thing (between Portugal, the caribbean, south america and Asia there is a lot of substitution calling things different names), but its worth a try to see if its what you are looking for.

    3 Replies
    1. re: itaunas

      I confirmed last week that Market Basket in Somerville had malanga lila in the location I mentioned -- near yuca, bitter orange, etc and facing the freezers (the plantains may not have been there). It was all in good condition and I only saw one piece which had signs of black spots (unlike Shaws in Medford which had really awful ones). As I said above there is a lot of substitution and different names so not certain its what you are looking for, but similar to what I have been served as purple taro.

        1. re: itaunas

          itaunas, never thanked you for this tip. we finally found it in stock there and bought it. malanga lila (lilac?), grown in costa rica.

          I wonder why it's so scarce in Boston; it has so much more and better flavor than regular taro.....

          i steam and mash it and make taro cakes with shrimp,ham and scallions. thanks much again.

      1. Maybe it's hit-or-miss, or gone forever, but I saw plenty at the old Super88/Hong Kong Market last winter.

        1. You might try the Somerville Winter Market at the Armory on Saturdays. They have a number of vendors selling produce including one that specializes in root vegetables.

          1. Over the phone today the produce person at MB Somville said they have it, but a trip there proved her wrong.the other som mkts also were a no. And super 88 was a No the other day, so unfortunately it's onto H Mart for us. phooey.

            1 Reply
            1. re: opinionatedchef

              now, get THIS!> the produce guy at HMart told My Love that there is no such thing as Purple Taro! Wow, now i REALLY am in trouble! Plse remember me- those of you shopping in Asian and Latin markets; TIA.

            2. Could you be referring to purple yam? In the Philippines this is known as ube and is made into a variety of desserts, ice cream being a favorite of mine.
              Purple yam -
              Ube and blueberry ice cream recipe -

              1 Reply
              1. re: alsaman

                no. ppl yam and ppl taro are entirely different.