Yuca (also known as Cassava or Manioc) is a starchy tuber grown in Central and South America. It is very high in carbohydrate (38g per 100g serving), but the carb is a type called “resistant starch” (RS).
RS can’t be digested in the stomach or small intestine so it is not quickly absorbed as glucose and does not induce insulin spikes. Therefore, it is NOT easily stored as fat! Instead, RS moves through the small intestine, feeding the friendly bacteria that live there. These bacteria convert RS into short chain fatty acids, such as butyrate, which build and bolster the gut walls. RS, therefore, helps to prevent and heal leaky gut syndrome and reduce inflammation.
When you see yuca on the grocery store shelf, it looks like tree trunk - it’s deep brown and has gnarly skin. Because it’s shipped from tropical countries, it’s dipped in wax to protect from damage and spoil. Use a sharp knife to peel the yuca much like you would a turnip or beet.
This recipe is a great alternative to “home-fries”- it’s crispy on the outside and fluffy/starchy on the inside and soaks up mushroom gravy or egg yolk perfectly!
4 cups yuca, peeled and cut into 1” cubes
1/2 onion, peeled and cut into 1” dice
1/4 cup melted ghee, coconut oil or olive oil
1 1/2 tsp Himalayan sea salt, divided
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 Tbsp Mrs. Dash seasoning
Method: Preheat oven to 400-degrees. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
Place yuca and onion into medium saucepan. Cover with water and add 1 tsp of the salt. Stir to dissolve the salt.
Place cover on saucepan and set over high heat to bring water to a boil. Slack the lid and reduce heat to medium, keeping the water at a simmer. Cook until yuca is barely fork-tender - approximately 5 minutes.
Drain water from yuca. Place in a large bowl and top with the melted ghee or oil, remaining 1/2 tsp salt, black pepper and Mrs. Dash seasoning. Toss to combine.
Spread evenly on prepared sheet pan and place in oven to bake until golden brown - approximately 20 minutes.