Katie's New Food Challenge strikes again! This time I picked up this funky looking root...
What is it? Yuca, or cassava. The cassava plant is a woody shrub with inedible leaves (they can make cyanide!) and a long thick root. Yuca does need to be cooked before consumption, so don't try it raw. It's a starch, similar to potato, that is a good source of calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin C. And here's a fun fact- tapioca is actually the starch extracted from yuca!
I picked a smaller piece, as I had NO idea how to get at the edible part and wasn't sure what I'd be able to do with it. Turns out you are supposed to peel the brown waxy rind... my peeler wasn't quite able to do that (too thick), so I just cut it away to reveal the white root underneath.
Ok, now what? After some contemplation and recipe searching, I decided to use my mandoline and thinly slice the yuca.
I then used this method to make yuca chips in the microwave! I could've done it in my oven, but it was already being used, and this was incredibly easy. I sprinkled them with a little bit of kosher salt, cumin, and cayenne pepper, tossed them around in a sprayed pie plate, and after 2-3 min, voila!
Along with a quick Mango-Avocado Salsa, my yuca chips made a great snack! If I had gotten a bigger root, they'd be perfect chip alternative at a bigger gathering :)
Mango Avocado Salsa
Recipe by Shannon
1/2c-3/4c diced mango
1/2 avocado, diced
1 small shallot, minced
1/2T-1T Daregal fresh frozen cilantro (or fresh cilantro, chopped)
juice of 1/2 lime
Combine all ingredients. Sit at room temp for a bit to let flavors come together before serving.