Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Tuesday’s Cupful: Dagu

A challenging specimen that yields a real treat
The Mixed Stew crew remembers venturing into the jungles of Guam to locate and dig up dagu. What to look for? Experienced harvesters look for the creeping dagu vines that wrap themselves around the jungles’ tree trunks. The vines have sharp thorns so the dagu must be harvested with care to prevent scratches or punctures to the skin (We wore gardener’s gloves). Pulling up the stems of these green vines yields the valuable roots. We also would use hollowed-out coconut shell-halves as make-shift hand shovels to scoop and dig around the larger dagu specimens. Peeling and cleaning dagu can leave stains to one’s hands and clothes. Meanwhile, the dagu itself is dotted with thorns, too. Dagu is comparable to stateside yams; however, they look nothing like them. The base recipe for bonelos dagu is a sweet variation that borrows from the preparation of American-style fritters that we mentioned previously in our post about shrimp patties.

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