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Healthy Vegetarian Foods


Yams, taro root, dasheen, madumbis or the real South African name – “amadumbe” – is a root vegetable that tastes amazing and looks weird.

They are packed with a host of vitamins, minerals and are an excellent source of dietary fibre. They are known to be toxic if eaten raw – however cooked they are an amazingly flavourful starch for any meal. Their leaves are also used as a spinach or like we Indians do – make a flavourful chick pea batter and smear layers over the leaves – roll up like a swiss roll steam and enjoy, (recipe to follow in another blog post).

Their health benefits are:-

  • Aids in digestion
  • Boosts immune system
  • Aids diabetics – because it regulates the release of insulin
  • Aids general heart health and blood pressure because of their potassium content
  • Keeps eyes healthy – because of beta carotene and antioxidant content
  • Skin savers – vitamin A & E content

However their intake should be controlled because of its high calorie count – serve it with some seasoned yoghurt and it shouldn’t be too bad – enjoy in moderation.


Stir Fried Amadumbis


6-8 medium boiled, peeled and sliced amadumbis

50ml cooking oil

2-3 curry leaves

1 dry chilli

3ml cumin seeds

5ml cumin powder

5ml salt

10ml lemon juice


  • Heat oil in a heavy based frying pan, add the curry leaves, dry chili and cumin seeds and allow to splutter
  • Add the amadumbis lower heat – and allow to cook for a few minutes – so the flavors can infuse
  • Sprinkle the cumin powder, salt and lemon juice and stir well – leave on heat so the sliced amadumbis can crisp up
  • Once done – garnish with chopped fresh coriander and serve with some salted smooth cottage cheese or some plain yoghurt




Comments: 9

  • Mike


    Could you let me know more about the use of madumbi leaves and how to prepare them? I believe you can eat the young stems after having removed the outer skin?

    • 25/02/2019

      Hi Mike – we Indians make something called patha with the leaves however it is very time consuming. also the leaves need to be cleaned/de-veined well so that you dont get irritation in your throat, the young stems i am not sure but can check on it for you. I will put some recipes soon. This is a quick one – clean leaves well – remove veins – cook some onions, add a chili or 2 and some cumin seeds – add your chopped well cleaned leaves and cook till wilted – add a pinch of sugar + 5ml lemon juice. hope this helps for now

      • Vinesh


        V good article

  • Zerina


    Hi Usha, om do glad i found this site.
    I make my own patha. But my throat feels like it is closeing up., i only cut out the the big stalk vein. Fo i cut the smaller veins inside the leaves too. Thank you

    • 21/05/2020

      hi Zerina – if the stalks and veins are thick – i would suggest cutting them carefully and then wash leaves in salt water and dry on a fabric table mat. Also you could add a little extra tamarind and sugar, dates or jaggery

  • DC


    Hi Usha. Really curious. Where did patha originate? Is it uniquely South African Indian? Who first created it?

    • 11/08/2020

      Hi Dhiraj – thanks for being in touch – it is a question that got me curious as well – and i have looked up some info – and no it is not unique to South African Indians – however the leaves vary – in that similar to a madumbi leaf. I have not yet found where and who first created it – but i have noticed that all over the world it is most popular amongst the Gujarati community

  • Daniel


    Hi i want to know hou do you plant it from the the madumpie self i love them and want to plant it my self

  • 05/12/2022

    I love it and want to plant it my self to eat at home hou do you plant it

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