Wednesday, May 12, 2004

What the ^@*$^ is Tapioca? We all know about Tapioca pudding. It was the sweet tasting desset from our youth with those mysterious looking bubbles. Seems like everyone has a fond memory of Tapioca, but at the same time, has absolutely no clue what it is made from. Most are fooled by the appearance, surmising that it is too symmetrical to be from anything natural. Wanna bet?
Tapioca comes from the cassava root (also known as yuca, manioc, mandioca), which is a staple in Africa and South America. Like most roots it has a tough brown skin with a white interior flesh. Cassava roots can be bitter or sweet and should be cooked before eating as they contain the poisonous chemical hydrocyanic acid. They are an important source of carbohydrate calories in tropical regions throughout the earth.

Tapioca comes from the starch extracted from the cassava root. It is sold both as a flour or as pearls. The pearls are what gives it the bubble look. Those bubbles can burst as they absorb water, resulting in a slimy texture. To avoid getting slimed, use refined or processed tapioca.

Now the next time someone asks "What the ^@#*$ is Tapioca?", you will impress their socks off.

thigs that make U go hummm!!1

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