When I decided on Boliche, I wanted to keep to the Cuban theme for the week. I figured a side dish was in order, and it wasn’t long before I settled on Yuca Con Mojo. I’ve had yuca (a.k.a. cassava) many times, including Yuca Con Mojo, but I’ve never made it myself. My Latinx friends warned me long ago that peeling yuca is not a pleasant task, so I’ve always had it at restaurants or as takeout. I decided to take the plunge when I found this recipe and that I could buy peeled, frozen yuca. No one ever told me! And now I have no reason not to try making yuca.
If you love Cuban cuisine, then you definitely don’t want to miss out on some yuca con mojo. This side dish consists of cassava (yuca) that is boiled until tender then simmered in a garlic zest infused citrus sauce.
Most of the ingredients were in my pantry or easily found. I had all of the spices including the Himalayan pink salt, but I have an overstuffed pantry. If you don’t have it, I’m sure plain old table salt will work just fine.
The only item that might be difficult to find is the frozen yuca. I couldn’t find it at Whole Foods, my usual grocery store, but it was available at Publix. A one-pound bag was an inexpensive $1.65, and it didn’t even need to be thawed!
The only thing I skipped was the optional coconut nectar. It was available, but I didn’t want another bottle taking up space in my already packed pantry. This is not something I could see another use for, so it would gather dust. I decided to skip it.
This Yuca Con Mojo recipe was not difficult at all! This recipe includes instructions for fresh and frozen yuca, so I got to skip right to step four. It doesn’t mention thawing the yuca, and a quick check of the bag said not to thaw it before boiling it for 30 minutes. That meant tossing the salt and some of the spices into a pan along with the frozen yuca. Easy!
I moved onto prepping the remaining ingredients while the yuca boiled. It was simple things like slicing an onion, measuring spices, and juicing the citrus. I had all that done long before the yuca was fork-tender.
Once it was ready, I drained it and noticed the pieces of yuca had split into halves and quarters as it boiled. That exposed the woody stems in the center, and they were easy to pull out with a fork. Just be careful as the yuca is very hot!
With the yuca stemmed (BTW, I did not cut it any smaller), I started the mojo sauce. I used my largest skillet, and it was the perfect size. This part was very quick and easy—just heat the coconut oil, add the remaining ingredients, and saute for five minutes. Just stir carefully as the yuca is delicate.
Here’s how long the entire process took:
- 36 minutes to boil the yuca
- 13 minutes to stem the yuca and saute in mojo sauce
- 49 minutes total