December 12, 2017

Sarawakian Local Delights : Tapioca (Ubi Kayu)

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Ubi kayu or tapioca used to be one of the cheapest snacks Sarawakians could have.

Tapioca is easily grown wherever farmers grow their padi in the past. The tapioca would be grown around the padi fields forming some kind of boundary between lots. Land would be put to good use. The leaves could be eaten as vegetables too.

India is now the largest exporter of tapioca leaves and root tapioca which is the main ingredient for making starch and other by products.

There are two kinds of edible tapioca in Sarawak, one which will yield roots and the other just good and delicious leaves for cooking.

Then there are two kinds of root tapioca. The more desired ones are those with yellow roots. The whiter ones are edible and slightly bitter. They become woody more easily.

Whenever Sarawakians see the yellow tapioca, they would not think twice to buy.

The yellow tapioca can be fried, boiled, steamed and cooked in soups, or as part of bubur cha cha.

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