Taste Test: McDonald's Taro Pie

Taro is a root vegetable you may not be familiar with but it has been referred to as "chocolate for Asian people". You can find it in a myriad of Asian sweet treats so it wasn't surprising to see McDonald's in Hong Kong selling taro pies. So how does it taste? Let's find out.

Image: Raw taro (this is not even its final form)/Wikipedia

I'm Chinese and let me just tell you: we love the taro. We put taro in just about anything. I've seen it in ice-creams, cakes, soups, mixed in with rice - you name it. It has a natural tinge of purple to it (in some snacks they come out as a bright nuclear purple) so those who have not grown up with taro may not find it appealing to eat. But for me, taro is glorious in almost any form.

I went back to Hong Kong for a holiday recently and stopped into a McDonald's for a feed. I saw that they sold taro pies, which is essentially an apple pie but with a taro filling instead. I've never really been a huge fan of McDonald's apple pies but being such a taro fanatic, I decided to give this newfangled snack a chance.

It looks like an average McDonald's apple pie on the outside and comes in a cute lavender packaging that I found particularly attractive. It uses the same thick rectangular pastry as the apple pie that has been fried to give it that recognisable golden hue.

I cracked this baby open to find softened cubes of taro floating on a bed of gooey liquid. I'm used to eating taro in a dessert soup (yes, that is a thing) so I'm not particularly fazed by this. I am a bit disappointed by the paltry amount of solid taro the pie contains; it's deceptively hollow inside (as you can see in the photo below). I wanted a mouthful of Asian chocolate, Goddamit.

The taro pie is also insanely sweet. The syrup was overwhelming and I had to stop after a few bites. While I did kind of enjoy the crispy pastry, the excessive sweetness eclipses any positive trait the pie carries. I had to neutralise the flavour with heavily salted fries, that's how sweet it was.

10/10 will not buy again, but if you have a massive sweet tooth, perhaps you'll be able to appreciate it.

Taste Rating: 3/10


Comments

    How have I never heard of this amazing fruit?
    (Don't say it's because I'm whiter than a Beatles album of the same name.)

      It's a root vegetable. Staple in a lot of African, Indian and Polynesian cooking and common in South East Asia too. Flavor is hard to describe. It's sweet and kind of nutty. Fairly common in Asian food stores in ice creams or as a stuffing in sweet pastries - basically anything you might find Red Bean in, you could also probably find a similar thing with Taro. I really like it personally.

        I've got a couple asian grocery stores nearby, a Malay and a Nepalese. I should poke about a bit and see if they've got some.

          They will have the vegetable itself at least, but you probably want to find some Taro-flavoured stuff instead.

    I was so excited when I read the headine thinking I can get this in Oz until I read your 1st paragraph that you were in HK :'-(

    Shocked to read that you didn't like it as I had a red bean pie a few years ago and it was delicious!
    Last year they had a Pumpkin Pie for Halloween. I just missed out as I went in November and they had Sold Out stickers stuck on all the posters :'-(

    I also had a Pineapple Pie but I can't remember if that was in HK or here in Oz. That one was ok but Red Bean is still my fav!

    This isn't new, Neil Diamond wrote a song about it decades ago. "Sweeeeet Taro pie *dum dum dum* Good times never seemed so good"

    Yes, I just went there.

    Is this really Taro or is it like the 'Apricot Pie' that McDonalds sold in New Zealand for decades that was actually pieces of pumpkin stewed in apricot sauce?

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