Lemon-Garlic Yuca Mashers with Cilantro Pesto

Lemon-Garlic Yuca Mashers with Cilantro Pesto

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From the EatingWell Kitchen

This healthy mashed potato recipe gets a Latin twist with yuca—also known as cassava—along with a swirl of Spanish-inspired pesto made with Marcona almonds and Manchego cheese. Use the leftover pesto to flavor steamed or roasted vegetables.

Ingredients 8 servings

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Original recipe yields 8 servings
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  • 1 medium yuca (about 1 pound)
  • 1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 5 small cloves garlic, divided
  • 2 cups packed fresh cilantro leaves
  • ¼ cup Marcona almonds (see Tip), toasted and chopped
  • ¼ cup grated Manchego cheese
  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth, heated
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground pepper


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  1. Remove the thick peel from yuca with a paring knife, then cut the yuca crosswise into 3-inch pieces. Place in a large saucepan and add enough water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until the yuca is falling apart, 50 minutes to 1 hour. After the yuca has cooked for 35 minutes, place potatoes and 4 garlic cloves in a medium saucepan. Add enough water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until the potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, place the remaining garlic clove, cilantro, almonds, cheese, 3 tablespoons oil and lemon juice in a food processor. Pulse a few times, then process until pureed, scraping down the sides occasionally.
  3. Drain the yuca; transfer to a cutting board. Remove the thin woody cores. Using a potato masher, mash the yuca in a large bowl. Drain the potatoes and garlic, add to the yuca and mash to the consistency of mashed potatoes.
  4. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons oil, lemon zest, broth, salt and pepper. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold everything together. Add ¼ cup of the pesto and fold into the yuca mixture.
  • Superbly crisp and buttery-tasting Marcona almonds have recently become more popular and more available. These Spanish almonds are a little flatter than ordinary almonds, with richer flavor. Always skinned, most Marcona almonds have already been sautéed in oil and lightly salted when you get them. Find them in specialty stores or online at tienda.com.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: ½ ?cup
  • Per serving: 167 calories; 7 g fat(1 g sat); 2 g fiber; 24 g carbohydrates; 3 g protein; 15 mcg folate; 1 mg cholesterol; 1 g sugars; 121 IU vitamin A; 12 mg vitamin C; 36 mg calcium; 0 mg iron; 256 mg sodium; 315 mg potassium
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (20% daily value)
  • Carbohydrate Servings:
  • Exchanges: 1½ starch, 1 fat

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