Saturday, December 8, 2012

Baked cassava chips

I am taking a little break from my Ecuadorian trip to post a couple of recipes that might be useful over the holiday season.  This first one is related to Ecuador, as cassava is a staple of the Ecuadorian diet and we had it in many forms on our trip.  But one of my favourites was cassava chips.

Obviously these would normally be deep fried, but as I usually try to avoid deep frying in my kitchen, for so many reasons, I decided to bake them. This did work, but it requires vigilance as they can burn in an instant. So you do need to be hovering around the oven while they are cooking, and not get distracted by the Internet or a phone call, as so often happens in my kitchen.

The cassava is a little intimidating when you buy it, but I had seen them cook cassava in the Amazon and so it had been a little demystified for me.

This cassava was not nearly as fresh as the one in the Amazon which we saw dug up and cooked with in an hour, but it is what is available in Canada in December.  There was a wax coating on it which I have read is for preserving it.  So obviously the first thing to do was peel it, which I did with a sharp knife as the peel seemed to be too thick for my potato peeler.

Then I cut it in to 2 large chunks and placed it in a bowl of cold water. This is what I saw the woman do in Ecuador, so I imagine it would discolour quickly if not covered in water.

Using my handy dandy mandolin I sliced it on the thickest setting as on the thinner settings the pieces broke very easily.

I quickly tossed these in olive oil and spread on a parchment paper covered cookie sheet in a single layer.

I placed this in a 350 oven for about 10 minutes.  But as I said you have to be vigilant as the ones around the edge, and the slightly thinner ones browned quicker, so I removed them as they were ready.

When they were all cooked I put the zest of a lime and 2 teaspoons of course salt in a mortar and pestle and pounded it until I had lime salt.

I tossed the chips in this salt to add a little more flavour.

These chips were delicious and a change from the regular corn and potato chips.  I served them with guacamole, but actually they would have been fine on their own or with salsa.  It was nice to bring a little taste of Ecuador home, and I will have to experiment with using cassava in other ways.


  1. thanks...gonna try this out today !

  2. Thank you... you inspired me to try and I did. It came out pretty good. I didn't have the lime so...used regular salt.

  3. Hi I just bought cassava for the first time and immediately thought about chips and stumbled upon your recipe. But I have seen as well that you need to remove the inner core. Is that necessary here? Thanks will be trying this one tomorrow

  4. IMPORTANT, you may want to update your blog post: you have to soak it in water because cassava contains a toxic compound! It may even be better to first cook it as well, so that the toxic compound is drained completely.

    Read the last paragraph: