Sunday, March 25, 2012

Colombian Fare: Yuca Frita (Fried Yuca)

I love yuca, whether it's fried or even boiled with just a little bit of butter and/or cheese.  This morning I had yuca frita for breakfast with a Colombian coffee.  Yuca is also often served as a side dish at Colombian restaurants.

I used frozen yucca for this recipe.  If you are using fresh yuca, keep in mind that you should use it within a couple of days of your purchase or you will likely find that your yuca is no longer good (you can cut it, boil it then freeze it until later as well).  I do find it is a pain to chop fresh yuca so if you can get to a Shop Rite, it is worth buying frozen in my opinion. I should have cut these yucas a bit finer but nevertheless they were delicious.

This recipe is adapted from Secrets of Colombian Cooking by Patricia McCausland-Gallo, her recipe in a nutshell is  1 pound of yuca deep fried in 2 cups of oil with a Tbsp of salt plus salt for serving.  I wanted to make a smaller portion and wanted to try to make this dish a bit healthier so I cut down on the amount of yuca, oil, and salt and used extra virgin olive oil. Another option is to eat some boiled yuca with a bit of cheese or Smart balance and just fry up one little piece of yuca so I don't have to use as much oil.  

Ingredients:
-approximately 3 cups of water(or enough to cover your yuca)
-1/3 pound of peeled, yuca, fresh or frozen
-1/2  tsp of salt, divided
-1/5 cup of extra virgin olive oil for frying
-1/2 tsp of salt (or to taste)

Directions:
1. If using fresh yuca, quarter it lengthwise (frozen yuca is already cut into chunks). 
2. Place the yuca in a medium pot with 3 cups of water (or however much it takes to cover).  Add salt.  Cover, bring to a boil and cook until fork tender, about twenty minutes.  Drain well and dry with paper towels.  **Note: take a look at your yuca, if they are large like those posted, you may wish to cut them in half. which is how they are pictured in the black and white photos in the cookbook.
3. Pour the oil into a skilllet and place over medium-high heat.  When the oil is hot, add the yuca sticks and fry for five to seven minutes or until  golden on all sides.
4. Remove the yuca and drain on paper towels.  Sprinkle lightly with salt and serve.

2 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. You can buy yucca at the supermarket; if you go to a large supermarket, you can buy it pre-chopped in the frozen food aisle. Otherwise, you can usually buy it fresh in a Garden of Eden (but then you have to use it right away).

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