While poor in protein, it packs a high caloric punch. Interestingly enough, the leaves do have protein so the plant as a whole is a very good food source to have nearby.
You are going to peel, grate and mash these funny looking tubers. My arm definitely got a work out in.
I knew that banana leaves must be big. But wow! They are REALLY big. I can honestly say that I've never cooked with either of these ingredients before.
Baton de Manioc
- Banana Leaves
- 2 lbs yucca
- Peel the outer skin.
- If you live outside of the US, soak the yucca for three days before preparing in order to remove naturally occurring poisons. In the US they are pre-soaked.
- Using a cheese grater, grate the yucca but don't grate up the woody core as it's not good to eat.
- Mush into a thick paste with a mortar and pestle, pastry cutter or potato masher. I used a combo of pastry cutter and potato smasher. I've also read that you can take a fork to it.
- Cut the banana leaves into about the size of sheet of paper. Most of mine were a little smaller than that.
- Put 2-3 tablespoons of the yucca paste in a little row and wrap the banana leaf around it to make a 1 by 4 or 5 inch packets. In Africa they are often 2 by 12 inches, but I don't have any way to steam something that size.
- Steam the packets for around 6 hours. Many of the recipes said that or longer, but they were also cooking larger batons. You'd probably be okay with 4 hours.
- Be careful when removing the batons from the steam. Steam is by definition very, very hot. So use care.
- Remove the banana leaf wrapper and enjoy the stachy goodness within.