What is Yuca?
Species: M. esculenta

Yuca (Manihot esculenta), also called cassava or manioc, is a woody shrub of the Euphorbiaceae (spurge family) native to South America. Yuca is extensively cultivated as an annual crop in tropical and
subtropical regions for its edible starchy tuberous root, amajor source of carbohydrates. Yuca is the third-largest source of carbohydrates for meals in the world. The yuca (cassava) root is long and tapered, with a firm homogeneous flesh encased in a detachable rind, about 1mm thick, rough and brown on the outside. Commercial varieties can be 5 to 10 cm in diameter at the top, and around 15 cm to 30 cm long. A woody cordon runs along the root's axis. The flesh can be chalk-white or yellowish. Yuca roots are very rich in starch, and contain significant amounts of calcium (50 mg/100g), phosphorus (40 mg/100g) and vitamin C (25 mg/100g). However, they are poor in protein and other nutrients.

In contrast, yuca leaves are a good source of protein and rich in the amino acid lysine. The oldest direct evidence of yucawh cultivation comes from a 1,400 year old Maya site. Yuca was a staple food for pre-Columbian people in the Americas. World production of Yuca root was estimated to be 184 million tonnes in 2002, rising to 230 million tonnes in 2008

Yuca can be cooked in various ways. The soft-boiled root has a delicate flavor and can replace boiled potatoes in many uses: as an accompaniment for meat dishes, or made into purées, dumplings, soups, stews, gravies, etc. Deep fried (after boiling or steaming), it can replace fried potatoes, with a distinctive flavor. Foufou is made from the starchy yuca-root flour. Tapioca (or fecula) is an essentially flavorless starchy ingredient produced from treated and dried Yuca (manioc) root and used in cooking. It is similar to sago and is commonly used to make a milky pudding similar to rice pudding. Yuca is used worldwide for animal feed as well a protein source. Cubans commonly use yuca to treat irritable bowel syndrome and is a gluten-free natural starch, there have been increasing incidences of its appearance in Western cuisine as a wheat alternative for sufferers of celiac disease.

No fat, No Cholesterol and low in natural Sodium. It is also a good source of Carbohydrate, Manganese, and a very good source of Vitamin C

Click here to see the nutritional values of Yuca

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