We bought a new car recently .. yay …!! and to celebrate the occasion, went to this awesome Latin american restaurant. The menu was very creative and I ordered a Cuban sandwich, that came with a side of yuca (cassava) fries. I was not expecting anything amazing other than fries but was blown away by how delicious they were. So I decided to give this recipe a shot . The fries that I had were deep fried, but I wanted to bake as a healthier alternative. They came out amazing and given that they are not fried, I am eating healthy as well makes me happy.
A lot of cultures use cassava in their cuisine including India. It is known by various names like sagudana (Oriya), kappa or maraccīni (malayalam), maravaḷḷikilanku (Tamil), sabakki (Kannada) and saggu biyyam (Telugu ) and the most common form of usage is tapioca pearls, that are used to prepare payasam, a sweet dish.
I have seen the yuca root ( Cassava ) in the potato section of the grocery stores. It has a waxy exterior skin and a starchy interior. Tapioca (Portuguese pronunciation: [tapiˈɔkɐ]) is a starch extracted from cassava root. It is native to south and central america and used quite widely in Latin cuisine. To be honest, I had zero experience with this root or the tapioca flour which is made from the starchy interior part of this root and is used as a thickening agent in the recipes. It is similar to corn starch and tapioca is known to be the purest form of starch.
You like french fries ? Then you will love this healthy baked yuca fries even more.
- 2 Yuca root (large)
- 1 tbsp Peanut oil
- 1 tsp Sea salt
- 1 tsp Paprika
- 1 tsp Turmeric powder (Optional)
Chili cheese sauce
- ¼ cup Cheddar cheese
- 3 tbsp Sour cream
- ½ Jalapeno (Finely chopped)
- 1 Garlic clove
- 1 tsp Butter
Cook time 25-30 min
Prep time 5 min
Passive time 20 min
- Peel the waxy coating of the yuca, some times there would a purple layer below that, remove that too.
- Cut the roots into 4 parts and boil for 15-20 min in water on medium heat.
- Preheat the oven to 425 F . Meanwhile cut the boiled yuca into long stripes. Drizzle peanut oil and sprinkle paprika, salt and turmeric and coat them well.
- Bake for 15-20 min. Baking time totally depends on the type of oven used.
- In a sauce pan, add butter, once it melts add the chopped jalapeno and 2 min later add finely chopped garlic. Cook for 2 min on low to medium heat. Add cheddar cheese and sour cream to mix well, slowly the sauce gets thickened after a minute or so. Switch off the flame and set the sauce aside in a serving bowl.
Serve hot ! The fries would become a bit chewy as they cool down.
I would suggest to cut the stripes into thicker pieces, I observed that they would be more soft and tender to bite into even after they have cooled down.
- When peeling and cutting yuca root, you have to be very quick as it tends to quickly discolor when exposed to oxygen in the air, so as soon you cut them submerge the pieces in water.
- Boiling the yuca root, removes the excess starch and thus prevents them from getting burnt and giving a bitter flavor.
- Yuca root is much harder than potato and boiling before baking helps to break down the tough cell structure of the root and make the interior cook thoroughly.
I would love to hear comments and suggestions from you.
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Happy September everyone !!