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  [Aroid-l] corrections, book on ''chubas''
From: <ju-bo at msn.com> on 2010.01.05 at 13:57:26
Dear Friends=2C

Below are comments on the obvious errors I see (not many=2C it is a GOOD book!) in the small publication by the Brooklyn Botanic Garden--"Buried Treasures=2C Tasty Tubers of the World".
Let`s start at the beginning of the book!

1) The very first photo one page in is of leaves captioned as belonging to Alocasia macrorrhiza. =3B =3B They are in fact the leaves of Colocasia esculenta =3D taro/dasheen/eddoes.

2) On pg. 7 is a photo of many roundish tubers/rhizomes/corms=2C the caption says they are of Xanthosoma sagittifolium. =3B =3B I am 99.9% certain that these are from Colocasia esculenta ''antiquorum'' or eddoes. =3B These same tubers are shown in the background on the photo on pg. 107.
Note---To be 100% certain of the I.D`s=2C I`d have to cook and eat these (and other) tubers/roots!

3) On pg. 10 is a photo of tubers/roots=2C the caption says that are from A. macrorrhiza. =3B
I am 99.9% certain that these represent the TRUE swollen roots (they are not rhizomes=2C corms or tubers) of Cassava/Manioc/Yucca/Tapioca (see pg. 52 for a good account on this plant.)

4) on pg. 22 is the ''biggie''. =3B =3B They picture and correctly label this plant as-- "Alocasia macrorrhiza---Giant Taro/Elephant`s ear/Ape (Hawaiian)''. =3B
My problem is that they say that the underground off-shoot tubers/rhizomes are great when cooked and used as food=2C but I have NEVER heard or read of this anywhere. =3B =3B Much of their report on the edibility/preparation of this plant is inaccurate=2C and they say that the photo on pg. 10 is of tubers from this plant=2C this is incorrect (see #3 above).
In Deni Bown`s book ("Aroids=2C Plants of the Arum Family"=2C GET A COPY IF YOU DON`T have one=2C GREAT book!!)=2C she refers to these small structures produced by this aroid as =3B "cormels''=2C and says that they tend to be coarse and acrid=2C and that it is sections of the main rhizome that are peeled=2C prepared/cooked and eaten. =3B
Recently a friend visited Fiji=2C and was treated to a meal of this by the village chief. =3B He photographed the prep./cooking of the portions of the main rhizome=2C and reported that it was good eating. =3B His account MAY become an article in a forthcoming issue of the IAS`s Aroideana.

 =3BI read a very few other minor errors and some glaring ommisions=2C all which I ignore.
All in all=2C it is a great little book=2C many seemingly GOOD sources for plants=2C etc. from dealers/nurseries at the back. =3B At the price=2C I highly recomend you purchase a copy (e-bay=2C or directly from Brooklyn Garden=2C $9.95.).


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