One of the dishes that we serve on Christmas Eve is yuca with mojo. Yuca is a type of tuber that is the Cuban equivalent of the potato. Yuca is known as cassava in English and besides boiling it, you can also make fries or chips with it. However, yuca is toxic when eaten raw so make sure it’s always cooked when you try it!
Yuca with Mojo is actually a pretty easy recipe. Once you’ve made the yuca, you can also fry up any leftover yuca and it’s really really tasty with some remoulade, chimichurri or some other garlicky dip. We usually serve up the fries with a traditional mojo criollo (which also makes a great marinade for steak, chicken or pork). Whenever you can, try to use fresh squeezed citrus in the recipes.
Yuca with Mojo
- 2 pounds yuca (the frozen kind is great and can be found in most freezer sections)(Why 2 pounds? So you can make fries with the leftovers! LOL!)
2 large onions
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 cups Sour Orange (Seville Orange) Juice — if you cannot get sour oranges (which are hard to find in many areas), substitute 1/2 cup lime juice mixed with 1/2 cup regular orange juice.
Salt to taste.
- Bring a pot of boiling water to boil (a 4 or 5 quart pan should do it). Add salt once the water is boiling. Add the yuca and boil until tender — about 10 to 15 minutes.
While the water and yuca are cooking, slice the onions into fairly thin rings. Saute them in the olive oil until translucent. Add the orange/lime juice to decaramelize the pan and a touch of pepper. Set aside.
When the yuca is tender, drain off all the water and place the yuca in a serving dish. Cover the yuca with the onion/olive oil/citrus mix and toss lightly.
That’s it! You’re done.
If you don’t finish all the yuca the first time, refridgerate it. When you’re ready for the yuca fries, cut the pieces of yuca into sticks. Fry until golden brown and then serve with some kind of dip. Here’s the recipe for that mojo criollo that I mentioned earlier.
- 1 cup Seville/Sour Orange juice (or substitite 1/4 cup lime juice, 1/4 cup orange juice)
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Fresh parsley minced, about 2 tablespoons
3 to 6 garlic cloves, pressed and minced (depends on how garlicky you like it)
salt and petter to taste
If you want to use this as a dip, process in a food blender for a very fine sauce.
There’s another variation on the Mojo that’s great on steaks as a topping and here it is:
Caridad’s Steak Mojo
1 cup lemon juice
1 big onion finely diced
2 to 3 tablespoons of parsley – finely chopped
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Let the parsley, lemon and onions soak together for at least an hour. That really smoothes the sharpness of the onion.
My daughter loves to eat this mojo on top of white rice! It’s one of her favorite foods.