I am not a big fan of tapioca in any form, but Ro is and he insisted we pick up a pack of the frozen ones to make some authentic mallu grub. He usually just boils it and then we have it with this very tasty and easy-to-make onion chutney, which is what he wanted to do since we were still in the process of adjusting to the new apartment and cooking was not in full swing as yet. Details...well complaints rather... about the move has been updated here.
In spite if all that, i went a bit overboard and decided to try the mashed ones which is a speciality in all the kallu (toddy) shops back in Kerala, frequently visited whenever we go to Kottayam. For my last birthday we happened to be in Kottayam and my in laws treated us to an elaborate kallu shop feast which was out of this world. There's a whole lot to write about that, so i shall keep it for another day.
Anyways, i am using some wifi connection from somewhere and it keeps disconnecting. So didn't have any luck with the recipe search online. You would all know by now that i sorely depend on the Internet to carry on with my life. So i had to call up mommy who also had no clue how to do so and she had to dig out her recipe book to read it out to me. I don't think i will be making this again, but this is how it goes:
Tapioca cubes- 250 to 300 gms, washed and cleaned
Grated coconut- 1/2 cup
Green chillies- 2
Cumin seeds- 1 tsp
Turmeric pwd- 1/4 tsp
Salt- to taste
Coconut oil- 1 tsp
Grated coconut- 1/2 tsp (optional)
Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
Dried red chillies- 2
Few curry leaves
In a huge vessel heat water (enough to cover the tapioca pieces) and once it boils, put in the tapioca, some salt and a pinch of turmeric pwd.
Simultaneously, grind the coconut, turmeric pwd, green chillies and cumin seeds. Pulse once or twice in a grinder. It doesn't have to be paste-like.
Once the tapioca is done (insert a fork and it should easily go through) take it off the flame and mash it (again, not to a paste) so there are still some cubes of tapioca left. Put it back on low heat, sprinkle the coconut mix, slightly stir it and cook covered just for a couple of minutes. At this stage you can check salt etc and add if required.
I like to do the tadka just before serving. Heat some coconut oil and splutter mustard seeds. Add the shallots, curry leaves and dried red chillies and pour it on top of the tapioca. Give it a stir and serve with spicy fish curry or pickle.
Notes: If its not the clean, frozen tapioca, i have no clue how to clean them. You might be better off googling it than have me gyan about it
I think i prefer this to Ro's method, but Ro liked his better. If that's what you want, just follow the first step of boiling it without mashing and team with fish curry or pickle.