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cassava pudding
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Servings: 10


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Step 1

Gather a couple of tubers of cassava… You can find it in the your supermarket’s produce department (I found it at Whole Foods), or in any latin grocer. Peel & cut the cassava into large chunks. Using a knife, cut out the woody fibers in the center (they can contain traces of cyanide and should not be added to the pudding).

Step 2

Grate the cassava then peel & grate the white sweet potato, adding to a bowl. Using cheesecloth or cotton, squeeze out the grated cassava and sweet potato. Twisting the fabric is the easiest way to do this. Reserve the liquid in a bowl.

Step 3

The squeezed out gratings will become dry. After 15-30 minutes, pour off the liquid you reserved into another bowl. At the bottom you will find a couple of teaspoons of thick white liquid – this is starch. Add it back to the gratings; it will help thicken the pudding.

Step 4

Next, pour the coconut milk onto the cassava mixture, only adding enough to create a mashed potatoes like consistency. I used 1 large can and one small can, or 18 fluid ounces.

Step 5

Preheat the oven to 350F. Meanwhile, soften some banana leaves over a open flame, to make them more pliable. A gas burner works great for this. Line a baking dish with the banana leaves (make a large cross with them) and spoon on the cassava mixture.

Step 6

Get everything smooth and flat, then fold the banana leaves back over the cassava mixture. Cover tightly with a lid or foil and bake at 350F for about 3 1/2 hours… or until browned on the edges.

Step 7

The mixture will still be wet and mushy. Set aside to cool and harden. Slice into squares and serve with grilled fish, steamed pumpkin, or PawPaw Curry. Remember, this one isn't supposed to win any beauty pageants.