Cassava flour benefits and uses– your hearty kitchen companion

Posted on September 27, 2021 by PlantVillage

Cassava has, for a long time, existed in the traditional African recipe. The tuber crop, which comes in handy for its roots and leaves, used to form a great meal companion for our great grandparents– no wonder their robust health and fulfilling lives!

In this article, we are going to review the benefits that comes with cassava flour, its uses in Kenya and just exactly how you can make a fantastic recipe for a loving one, a guest or whosoever– you know who you would go for so cheers.

A brief about cassava

Cassava flour comes from the root of the cassava plant which thrives in the tropics. There are two types of cassavas: sweet and bitter. The bitter type contains a large amount of the chemical cyanide, which is poisonous. Thus, bitter cassava cannot be eaten raw and therefore should be properly grounded and heated.

Cassava flour is a product of the root which is white in colour when its brown covers are peeled off. It is used in delicacies in at least 80 countries and a stable food to at least 800 million people across the world.

Making cassava flour

Making cassava flour could be as easy as writing your name and this is how you would go about it:

  • Harvest and peel the cassava tubers.
  • Clean the peeled tubers.
  • Grate the cleaned tubers into small pieces.
  • Place the grated cassava into a clean cloth or tea towel before tying the corners.
  • Hang the cassava for at least 5 hours to allow excess moisture to drain away.
  • Spread the cassava out on a tray until it is no thicker than a few millimeters.
  • Leave the cassava out to dry for a few days. Alternatively, use a dehydrator or put the trays in the oven until the cassava is dry.
  • As soon as the cassava is fully dried, grind it to a fine powder and place it in an airtight storage container.

Benefits of cassava flour

Cassava flour comes along with a myriad of benefits for human health among other usefulness.

Good source of carbohydrates: We all need energy to get moving. This energy comes from foods rich in carbohydrates. Cassava flour is loaded with this essential compound presented in a palatable form. In fact, cassava flour has double the amount of calories found in every 100g of potato flour.

Contains resistant starch: Resistant starch is not digested in the small intestines. It proceeds to the colon where it aids in feeding beneficial bacteria, ferment and protects a person from inflammatory issues such as constipation, Crohn's disease and diarrhea.

Weight loss: You have a disturbing weight gain that you would like to get over? Worry not! In putting up a lifestyle that encourages you to shed off a few pounds, cassava flour comes in handy because eating it helps you feel fuller by reducing the levels of the hormone that causes hunger.

Gluten free: People sensitive to gluten, a protein found in wheat, can find cassava flour a great alternative because it is free from it.

Wonderful eyes: Cassava flour is good source of vitamin A compounds such as bararotennya which are essential for health of the eyes– it prevents poor eyesight and blindness.

The traditional touch: Apart from the health benefits outlined above, cassava flour gives you that traditional touch needed in every kitchen in Africa! This will take you back hundreds of years ago when you would sit down around a three stone fireplace, your grandma cooking you a hearty meal while narrating to you about dreaded ogres in the forest.

Uses of cassava flour

Cassava flour has a lot of uses in Kenya. This is elaborated in the points below:

  • Cassava replaces wheat flour in baking bread, cookies, cakes, muffins and brownies.
  • Used in making flatbreads and tortillas.
  • Cooking ugali. I knew you would die if I didn't mention this. Ugali from cassava flour is tasty and unique.
  • Cassava can be mixed with wheat flour to make more appetizing chapatis and mandazis.
  • Its excellent thickness is useful in making soup for baby foods, puddings, gravies and sources.
  • Cassava helps bind together sausages and processed meats and to ensure it does not dry completely while being cooked.

 

Recipe for Cassava Cake

Ingredients

Here are the ingredients you need:

  • 3 mugs cassava flour
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 ½ mugs of milk
  • 1 table spoon of grated lemon
  • 1 cup margarine or 250 ml vegetable oil
  • 3 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 5 eggs
  • A pinch of salt

Method

This is how to go about with your ingredients:

  • Mix the margarine/oil and sugar until it is light and fluffy
  • Add eggs one by one and continue mixing
  • Add vanilla essence and grated lemon, mix thoroughly
  • Sift the flour, baking powder and salt separately before mixing with the already prepared egg mixture
  • Add milk and continue to turn so as to achieve a smooth, thick mixture
  • Smear the baking tin(sufuria) with margarine and dust it off with the wheat flour to prevent the cake from sticking to the baking tin
  • Cover the baking tin with a lid and put it in an oven with minimal heat for about 30-40 minutes
  • Test whether the cake is ready by pricking it with a clean object like knife. If the knife comes out clean, the cake should be ready to serve.

References

downshiftology.com– Five things you need to know about cassava flour

medicalnewstoday– Cassava flour: what is it, uses, benefits, recipes and more

stlucia.loopnews.com– Bet you didn't know: 10 health benefits of cassava

Farmconcern.org-Did you know cassava flour could make a wedding cake?

 

Written By; Samuel Ondori




PlantVillage PlantVillage logo