Banana Chips Technolgy, Including Root Crops

The main material for making banana chips is raw saba banana. Ripe has increased sugar which makes the middle of slices go brown before the entire slice turn crispy. It also has lower starch and higher moisture content which makes cooking difficult. I think turning it to crisp is impossible.

Any cooking banana can be made into chips. Eating bananas are not. Saba are cooking bananas while latundan, lakatan and cavendish are eating bananas. Want to know their differences aside from the very obvious shape? In both ripe conditions, cooking bananas hold it shape during boiling while eating bananas do not. The latter become saggy.

Because it is made of raw banana, many producers add commercially available banana flavor. It’s a bit odd but true. Buy some properly labeled chips there and you will see… I felt nostalgic about the training I conducted. The seminar organizer asked me why my cooking tasted like raw banana. My answer was obvious. No need to mention.  Additional flavoring prevents this cases from occurring.

Use separate oil batches for first and second frying. The latter absorbs sugars which burns in subsequent use. Both oil batches maybe cleaned for several use by allowing sugar crystals and broken chips settle to bottom and decanting after.

If you feel the cassava you are working with is too hard, stop and discard them away. They are probably past harvest maturity and might contain considerable amount cyanogen, a paralytic compound.

Be aware of potatoes with green peels. The green substance is called solanin. It is poisonous. Scrape the green part off and the rest can be used safely.

Procedure:

1) Prepare syrup by mixing one kg sugar with one liter water. Boil for 30 minutes. Cool. Adjust sweetness intensity by adding or lessening sugar quantity. Use refractometer for better accuracy.
2) Select bananas. Wash it thoroughly until all the adhering dirt are removed.
3) Peel by cutting both ends, making a single longitudinal slit and lifting the skin off with knife. It is tricky and hard at first but you’ll get used to it eventually.
4) Place in basin of water to prevent browning and wash off latex.
5) Slice uniformly. Thickness should be 1/16 inch. Use a guided knife, a manual slicer or a machine slicer capable of high speed work.
6) Heat the cooking oil up to 270°F. In absence of candy thermometer, monitor by placing a slice in oil, it is ready when rapid bubbling appears on sides. Cook for 15 minutes or until crispy. Remove from oil and cool.
7) Soak in syrup for 3 minutes. Drain. Store remaining syrup and use for next batches.
8) Cooked in oil (270°F) for 5 to 10 minutes. Separate sticking pieces.
9) Remove from oil. Place on manila paper or clean towel to drain off excess oil. Turn to facilitate draining.
10) Pack in PP bags or other suitable containers.

Sugar Free?

Skip steps 7-9 and you have it. You may sprinkle powdered flavorings instead. Like barbecue, cheese and chili.

Taro/Gabi, Cassava/Kamoteng Kahoy and Potato Chips?

The same slicing and frying procedure apply. However, pay close attention to frying time as they get cooked in seconds and burnt easily. Jollibee and McDonalds french fries cooking trick is awesome for this. The specially made frying strainer allow quick dipping in and removal from hot oil. If you’re a fan of these two fast-food chain then you already seen how it works.

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.

The Cassava Cake from Iloilo

If I never knew what it was from the start, I would have thought it was an egg pie. An egg pie with an odd looking shape. There was no thrill cause he never gave me the chance to make a wild guess.

It was a cassava cake straight from Iloilo. Different from cassava cake from Cotobato. Different from what vendors here in Indang are selling. And even different from what my mom used to cook.

It amazes me how a specific delicacy is changing based on places, human experiences and preference. Human are really made to be creative.

This cassava cake tasted slightly sweet and milky. I felt a slight kick of egg pie flavor. A softer upper portion while the rest / bottom was tougher. I never felt any cheese but I was guessing the worm like decorations were cheese shreds.

cassava cakes ilo ilo style

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.

A Cassava Cake Straight From Cotobato

A cassava cake straight from Cotobato. So how did it differ from our Indang version?

whole cotobato cassava cake

The first sight obviously showed the difference. This was relatively darker. A cream looking center and a chocolate like edges. Slicing to equal parts revealed the inner portion. It was also darker. The color difference might be due to use of brown sugar like muscovado and coconut sugar, and or long and low temperature baking which caused maillard browning reaction.

It basically taste like cassava cake that I usually buy but the toppings made the difference. It was a mixture of milk and cheese. It was not too sweet. My sense of taste wasn’t able to determine the type of sugar used.

The cassava cake was made by Wiw’s Foodhaus and Refreshment.

wiw foodhouse and refreshment

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.

Yet Another Way to Get Rid of Cyanide from Cassava

Cassava or kamoteng kahoy is popularly known to have poisonous cyanide. It is poisonous if sufficient amount is inhaled or adequate quantity is consumed.

A student was selling cassava suman in between classes to cover her tuition fees, daily allowance and other school needs. Selling in school premises without administrative permission is illegal. I hope this instance is an exception.

A short interview:

What was that?

It was suman made of cassava. A mixture of grated cassava and sugar. It was wrapped in banana leaves and boiled.

Was that soft or hard? If the kamoteng kahoy used was matured, then the resulting product will be tougher than normal.

The texture was normal. Not too soft and not too hard.

Was that safe to consume? It might contain harmful cyanide enough to send me to hospital or even worse.

It was safe. We pressed out the juice thoroughly after grating, to remove any possible danger substance.

The popular way of removing or avoiding the harmful chemical are by harvesting young but plumb roots and by fermentation. Pressing out the liquid after grating is an addition to mentioned methods. It might not rid of cyanide completely but it will sure remove significant amounts.

How about the nutrients? Loss of juice sure took away nutrients.

Cassava is a rich source of carbohydrates, the energy giving carbs. The main reason why we are eating cassava is to get energy. Take a variety of nutritious foods like fruits and green leafy vegetables for a balance nourishment.

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.

Please Identify This Cassava Defect, brown to black varicose like veins

For the sake of quality control, all items in a batch should have same appearances. Any with properties that differ from the norm will be deemed as reject. Imposition strictness depends on purpose.

I was peeling cassava. Size did not matter as long as it’s young, not woody and white in appearance. I discarded one piece, it had several root attachments, hard too peel and might be too hard to eat. There was no yellowish cassava. Based from my experience, yellowish color is sign of too old crop, more than years. Its texture is hard, too hard to eat.

I rejected this cassava too. It has brown to black varicose like veins on surface and deep down the flesh. Perhaps it is a crop disease. No pictures found on net. Do you know what it is?

Note: The narrow spiral incision around is a knife made cut. I stored it in refrigerator for more than 12 hours before taking pictures. The spiral cut got wider after refrigeration.

varicose vein cassava onevaricose vein cassava threevaricose vein cassava two

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.