Did you just say “What?”No i did not made up the name..Let me introduce you to this wonderful vegetable called ‘Yucca’.You must have bypassed it several times.It is hanging out right by its tuberous buddies, potatoes, sweet potatoes.If you like potatoes,i ask you to give ‘potato’ much deserved break sometime and take buttery ‘yucca’ for a ride in your pot and pans.If you still do not know what I am talking about,i give you a hint,it is closely,yes motherly related,to ‘Tapioca’.
Now that you are on board with me,let me tell you,today’s mother’s day special is shared by my friend Stacey.She grew up in Brazil.Yucca Fries freshens up fun growing up memories for her.Read what she has to say about it.
I recall the first time I had Yucca Root(“Aipim” in Portuguese). It was crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside. My grandmother would make it on Sundays, when we would have our family gatherings. Just remembering the smell coming from the kitchen, while my cousins and I played in the livingroom and the adults would sit around the diningroom table and catch up with life events. For me, “Aipim” is a comfort food. To me it tastes better than french fries and makes me long for the sunny days of hanging out on the beach with family and friends also. Where women dressed in all white, would fry the ‘Aipim’ in these huge pans and serve them with big,warm smiles.
Ya, I think of family, sunsets, good times when I make this for my husband and daughter. We are building memories already, when she runs into the house and asks for a piece for her and her friends outside. Or when, I look at the plate and a couple of pieces are missing, from my husbands nibbling. I love food and this is one of the reasons.
This is how these buttery Fries comes together:
- When I buy the yucca root, I look for a hard, shiny brown coat piece. A lot of cashiers here in Texas don’t even know what it is.So be prepared to spend few extra minutes at the checkout counter.
- Peel it with a vegetable peeler. It peels quite easily.
- Cut it in several pieces. Not too small yet you want it about the length of a french fries.
- Put water in a pan big enough to cover the yucca all the way.
- Boil it till it becomes soft, when you stick a fork in it and somewhat transparent
- Now, at this point you can eat it warm, with some butter (which is really good also) or you can fry it.
- The frying pan doesn’t need to be a deep fryer like you would to make fries. You can use enough canola or vegetable oil to fry each side. You will just be frying each side till golden brown on the outside.
- Once done, I tend to put it on a plate with a paper towel to soak up the remaining oil.Season it with salt and pepper.
- It is best to serve warm. It goes well with black beans (or beans of your preference) and white rice.
- Yucca has Latin ancestry.It is staple in Brazil and many African country.
- ‘Cassava’ is popular name for ‘Yucca Root’.Brazilians make flour out of it and it is called ‘farinha de mandioca’ (Flour manioc).
- Tapioca also comes from same Yucca root but is processed differently then Flour manioc.
- Manioc flour,many times is cooked with fried bacon, some green onion and egg, it is called Farofa. It is very popular dish in Brazil.