What is Tapioca?

Tapioca is a gluten free starch extracted from cassava root (tuber) (Manihot esculenta). It’s usually sold in form of powder, flakes, seeds, sticks or pearls.

Cassava (manioc, yuca) is mainly grown in South America, Caribbean, South Pacific Asia and Africa. In the US, it’s grown in Florida.

Tapioca is made by grinding cassava tuber into pulp. The pulp is squeezed to remove the starch rich liquid. Water is evaporated leaving behind fine grained tapioca powder.

Processing of Tapioca Powder

The resulting tapioca powder is commercially processed into desired forms like: hot soluble powder or pre-cooked flakes, sticks, seeds or pearls, which may be coloured, brown, yellow or red.The pearls, also called sago, are 1-8mm diam. and are the most popularly used forms.

The pre-cooked tapioca forms like the pearls or sticks, must be rehydrated by soaking in water or other liquid. During re-hydration, they absorb water, double in size and become chewy and swollen.

Below is a photo of Cassava (Manioc, Yuca)

Cassava ( Manioc,Yucca Wax) myfavouritepastime.com

Culinary Use of Tapioca 

Tapioca powder is used in thickening foods like soups, sauces. desserts, pie-fillings.

Tapioca is used for making the well known British milk puddings and the US tapioca puddings.

Tapioca is also used in making popular dishes like sago soup (China), falooda (India), bubble tea (taiwan), Kheer (rice-puding India) and Taho (Philippines). The pearls or stick tapioca add some chewiness to the dish.

Tapioca powder can be mixed with other flours to make gluten free bread.

How to Cook Y&Y Tapioca Pearls

  1. Cook Y&Y Brand Tapioca Pearls in boiling water for 5 minutes using the ratio of 6.1 for water to pearls (6 cups water for every cup tapioca). Stir occasionally to prevent the pearls from sticking together.
  2. Remove from the heat and leave the pearls in the hot water until they turn translucent (approximately 20 minutes)
  3. Using a fine strainer, rinse the pearls in cold water. The tapioca pearls are ready to be used in desserts and drinks.

Nutrition Facts Y&Y Tapioca Pearls

 3 tablespoons (30g/10z): tapioca pearl provides 110 calories and the following:

  • Fat 0g;
  • Sodium. 7mg;
  • Carbohydrate: 27g (Fibre 1g);
  • Protein 2g.

Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) per 30g (3 tablespoons):

Calcium 2% and Iron 6%.

myfavouritepastime.com Last Updated: July 17, 2019

Author: Liz

I love everything food: eating, cooking, baking and travelling. I also love photography and nature.

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