Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Yuca Fries (Page 589)

RECIPE #1017

  • Date: Saturday, August 29, 2009 -- 8pm
  • Location: Bloomington, IN
  • Kitchen: My Apartment
  • Fellow Chef: Matty
  • Recipe Rating: B-

This was my fourth attempt to make this recipe, and I am happy to say that this time I actually made it. The previous three attempts were foiled by the fact that the yuca I bought was not fresh. yuca spoils quickly, but it is difficult to detect whether it is spoiled or not from the outside (it might have an ammonia smell...). In any event, my previous 3 yucas had many black veins through them when I cut them open, indicating that they were not so fresh. I suppose yuca doesn't fly off the shelves in small town Indiana. In any event, my fourth yuca was fresh enough, so I went ahead with the recipe. I cut the yuca crosswise into 3 inch pieces and then peeled it. I cooked the yuca pieces in boiling salted water until tender. Then I cut them into wedges and deep-fried them until they were golden brown. Then I salted them and served them with ketchup. These fries were fine. Deep-fried vegetables rarely taste bad. I didn't particularly care for their texture however. They were starchy like potato fries, but substantially denser. Consequently they didn't have the light fluffy interior that makes French fries so delightful. They were interesting to try once, but I wouldn't make them again. French fries are just as easy (or easier) to make and I find them tastier.

The recipe in The Book is similar to this one, but without the chipotle mayo and the yuca fries in The Book are thicker.

When I got home from work this evening I sat down on the sofa, exhausted. It was an easy day -- I don't teach on Wednesdays, so I was just in my office all day, working on my research. But after a day of thinking hard I was tired, and the last thing I felt like doing was going for a run.

My marathon training is not going so well. I have not been injured -- I have just been lazy. I found it hard to stay on schedule while traveling, and I traveled pretty much all summer. So by the time it came around to my 18 mile long run last week, it kicked my butt. At the end of the run I ended up collapsed in the grass, unable to even walk the quarter-mile to where my car was parked. This is not good. So this week I tried to do a better job of training, in hopes of getting back on track for these last two months before the marathon.

To that end, this evening when I was sitting on the sofa feeling tired and lazy I forced myself to get up anyway, put on my running shoes, and get out of the house. As I stood at the trailhead, I thought, "Well at least it's only 7 miles." Better to be miserable for 7 miles than for 18! But much to my surprise, as soon as I started running, I felt great. It was a comfortable run and at a nice pace. So maybe I am getting into the swing of things. This weekend will be my first 20 miler. I am both nervous and excited about that milestone. You often hear people say, "If you can run 20 miles, you can run a marathon!" Who knows if that's true, but since I have never run 20 miles, it never applied to me anyway. Now it just might...

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