Cassava cake is one of my favorite merienda during my college years. A regular slice was so affordable and power packed with carbohydrates that can fill in my angry stomach. Studying consumes a lot of energy so a regular refill was necessary.
My mom occasionally cooks cassava cake. Though it’s a little short of ingredients. She is just adding little sugar to grated cassava. Then cook it on frying fan over a very low fire. The method is like frying egg without cooking oil. The resulting cake is tougher than what I used to buy from school canteen.
Today, she just cooked a cassava cake. Her recipe is different from my mom’s. Here it is!
1/2 kilogram cassava (balinghoy, kamoteng kahoy)
1/4 kilogram refined or brown sugar
1 medium can of evaporated milk
1) Wash cassava thoroughly under running water to remove all adhering soils. Rinse well. Be sure to choose cassava that are not more than one year old – those are doubt to have high levels of toxic cyanide. Buy raw materials only from trusted sources.
2) Too peel off cassava, make a narrow spring like cut pattern and gently prick off the peel continuously. The peel and flesh adhesiveness is weak so it can be peeled off easily.
3) Repeat washing.
4) Grate on a stainless steel grater. Care should be taken not to include the thin woody strand along the center.
5) Transfer the grated kamoteng kahoy to a mixing bowl. Add evaporated milk and sugar. (Brown sugar is preferred for health reasons though it results to a not so appealing cake color.) Mix well until smooth.
6) Fill mixture to aluminum molds (lyanera). Apply thin coat of margarine before filling to facilitate easy removal. Banana leaves can be placed on lyanera as alternative. Leave an inch head space.
5) Preheat the cooking oven to 400ºF. Baked for 30 minutes at the set temperature.
6) If a cooking oven is not available, the mixture can be steamed for 45 minutes. Texture will slightly differ.
7) Top with grated cheese while still hot. Can also be done before cooking.
Marvin is the lead chocolate maker of Ben and Lyn Chocolate Inc. Has strong background in food research and development. Occasionally conducts training and lectures. Lecturer of Cocoa Foundation of the Philippines. Do coaching and consultancy services on his free time.