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The best fries ever. Ever.



Madumbies are known to every suburban gardener as Elephant’s Ears. The leaves are huge, heart-shaped and sit on short thick stems on a short, thick trunk. As with most other garden decoratives, ‘everyone knows’ this to be poisonous. I have never seen flowers or fruit.


The plant is truly gigantic, and looks formidable. A quick tug will reveal a rough brown onion-shaped root ball easily ripped from the fibrous roots left behind. That onion-shaped ball is the harvest, snap off from the leaves, which may be replanted. Enough will survive to supply a number of new Madumbies next season.



The bulb is as starchy as any potato. It does, however, not last long after harvesting. The freshness of a Madumbie can be assessed by cutting through and looking at the coloured channels running through it. A freshly picked specimen is as white as an angel’s laundry; yesterday’s Madumbie has pale yellow line running through it. By Friday next, those lines are brown going on black, and the only use for it is to replant and grow more for next year.


I know of only one use for Madumbies: The best fried chips ever! It kicks potato arse from here to eternity. If I had a restaurant, I would grow this stuff in tunnels.