Saturday, 12 September 2015

Cypriot kolokasi seeks PDO

After the recent success of halloumi, that was given a coveted status of Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) product, another application has been filed to the EU. This time for kolokasi, otherwise known as Cyprus taro (Colocasia esculenta), a starchy root vegetable, which is usually stewed in a tomato sauce.
The plant is thought to be native to Southern India and Southeast Asia and, apparently, kolokasi was brought to Cyprus by the Romans, who used it in much the same way the potato is today, but who would cook it in sauce of pepper, cumin, rue, vinegar, oil and liquamen (or garum).
Kolokasi is undoubtedly a traditional product of Cyprus as historical references of its presence in Cyprus exists since the 12th century, but Cyprus was part of the Roman Empire too, which might mean the produce was grown on Cyprus since Roman times. On Cyprus, 85 per cent of taro is produced on fields around the eastern town of Sotira.
It is hoped by Cypriot officials that the application can become an effective tool to promote the produce and thus enhance the local agricultural and gastronomical economy.

However, it should be remembered that kolokasi is essentially poisonous and should be shoaked overnight in cold water to remove the calcium oxalate, which contributes to kidney stones.

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