What’s common between the people of the South Indian state of Kerala and the South American country of Brazil? There is the obvious answer – “football“, but I am fishing for something else here!
Other than football, it’s the love for cassava, aka tapioca, that brings them together! This tuber, originally from South America, was introduced into India by the Portuguese, and has been a popular crop in Kerala from late 1800s.
One of the purest forms of starch, tapioca is a rich source of carbohydrates. By balancing it with sources of protein and dietary fibre, you can make a full meal out of it.
Back to Kerala – travel across the state, on the road, or off the road in houseboats, you’ll notice all toddy shops, and all local eateries featuring their own versions of mushy tapioca (or Kappa, as it’s called there). This recipe is my tribute to all the great mushy tapioca variants I have come across!
Mustard seeds, curry leaves, crushed dry chillies, and garlic, fried in coconut oil and mixed with mushy tapioca with a seasoning of turmeric and salt.
For me, that’s the gooey joy of food!
PS: Pair it well to strike a great balance of flavours. Watch this space for the Part II – Kerala Fish Curry. That’s what you call a classic combination!