by Dorie Greenspan
I knew tapioca as a type of pudding, which I have never had before this, but beyond that I knew nothing about it.
Just what is tapioca exactly? Well, it's a starchy tuberous root of all things, also known as cassava. It is one of the purest forms of starch food. Tapioca is also used as a thickening agent. Many refugees in Southeast Asia actually survived on tapioca during World War ll.
Did you know you can actually make your own tapioca pearls if you can not find them? A quick internet search will show you how.
Like I said, I never had tapioca pudding before. I was expecting it to be pudding like - smooth and creamy (aside from the little balls of tapioca). Which it was, until I refrigerated it. Then it turned gelatinous, Jell-O like, but firmer. So firm, that you would be able to cut it with a knife, and serve little squares of it - which could be fun. Maybe.
My sister was coming to dinner the following evening, and I asked it she ever had tapioca. Yes, she had, and she loves it! Couldn't wait to try mine. The consensus was, it had good flavor, but it is supposed to be soft and creamy, not firm.
Hmm. Maybe I overcooked it? I cooked it until it was the texture of (non-Greek) yogurt, as instructed. I have some tapioca pearls leftover, I'll give it another try, cooking it for a shorter time.
We have been asked not to post the recipes here on our blogs. You can find the recipe on page 382 of Baking Chez Moi, as well as on Google Books.
Do check out my fellow bakers results, by clicking here for a list of their links.