There comes a time when you wonder if your
friends enablers are genuinely motivated by a desire to see you create and succeed, or whether it is to appease their hunger. I’m not complaining, just thinking out loud.
Let me quickly recap in case you missed last week’s column.
I had hoped to salvage some mini cheese-stuffed cassava balls that fell apart while frying, by baking them in an oven. When I put the balls in the oven, they melted into a messy mass.
Now I had planned to test the baking of mashed cassava with the cheese mixed in, sometime in the future, because, as my friend intimated, the baked melted cassava was very tasty. However, after receiving her email I couldn’t resist, I felt compelled to try the recipe sooner rather than later. I bought some cassava and set about making the cassava – biscuits? Puffs? Puff biscuits? Not sure what to call them.
Boiled and mashed while piping hot, the cassava stiffened as it cooled requiring a little more hand work to get it all smooth. Next I mixed in the cheese and when the mixture was cool I added in the sliced scallions/green onions. Rolled into balls, the cheesy cassava mixture puffed up in the oven, creating a dome-like shape with a base that spread a little. They were beautiful and golden. I had no idea what to expect in terms of their appearance so I was completely surprised at how they turned out. The taste? I’ll let you tell me when you make them. Here’s what you’ll need and what to do.
YIELD: 30 – 32
- 2 parchment-lined 13” x 18” sheet pans
- 2 cooling/wire racks
- 2 pounds mashed cassava
- 1 ½ cups grated sharp cheddar cheese
- 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
- ¼ cup thinly sliced scallions/green onions
(white/purple and green parts)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Mix together all the ingredients and take a little of the mixture at a time and roll into balls. Assemble 16 on each baking sheet.
- Bake for 25 minutes until puffed up and golden. You can bake 1 pan at a time or if baking both pans at the same time, switch the position of the pans half way through baking to ensure evening cooking.
- Transfer the biscuits from the baking pans to wire racks to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature.
- Note that the recipe calls for 2 pounds of mashed cassava; this means that you have to buy at least 1 pound extra so that by the time you remove the skins and bits at the top and bottom, you would have a good yield when the cassava is cooked.
- Boil the cassava in salted water so that you do not have to add salt when mashing.
- Completely mash the cassava first, removing the fibrous stems from the middle before adding the cheese to be mixed in. Add the scallions only after the cheese has been completely mixed in with the cassava.
- For this recipe, I prefer to bake one pan at a time.