05 June 2020

Kappa Vevichathu |Cassava/Yuca mashed with coconut paste Traditional Kerala style


Kappa/Maricheeni/Cassava root/Yuca (in Spanish)/Tapioca (mistakingly know as,though it is actually a starch) is one of the mosssstt favourite food item of Keralites/Malayalees all around the world.Consequently,almost every home in Kerala have Kappa krishi /Cassava plantation in their backyard .

These plants are very tolerating and giving because they are very easy to plant,can survive any kind of soil,need no special manure,no special attention,they grow fast though take a year almost to mature fully and it's the n-number of tuberous roots that is sought after.These tuberous roots can be consumed in various ways/recipes - in boiled form,in mashed form,can be made into chips or dried and powdered used as a thickening agent ,pudding,or as a flour for making breads,crackers etc .

Kappa and my mother's vintage paathram/utensil
 So,kappa is a staple food in almost every household here in Kerala. And it is equally ,if not more ,has become the most popular food item from small roadside food shops famously known as thattukadas ,toddy shops/Kallu shaap to the Hi-Fi resorts /5 star restaurants in and out of Kerala.  


Mallus just go gaga over this root-y vegetable food !! Mallus in Kerala just relish and celebrate this staple food everywhere and for Mallus outside Kerala ,it is a pure nostalgia ,a reminder of their roots/true identity and so many simple and profound memories related to it that any kappa recipe or a sheer mention of them, will simply make them smile big.😊

PICTURE CREDIT :www.feedstrategy.com

Since my G.K. is too good πŸ˜ŽπŸ˜‹πŸ˜‰πŸ˜€,I always thought ,Kappa/Cassava is or should be declared the ultimate state vegetable of Kerala .I have never seen in a menu or got a chance till now to taste any recipes of Kappa other than from Kerala . BUT there's more to it..


Did you know ?

(SOURCE : healthline.com)
  • As mentioned in plantauthority.gov.in ,Cassava which originated in South America ,was later cultivated in Brazil,Peru,Columbia and Venezuela about 10,000 years ago.
  • Cassava was introduced to India by the Portuguese when they landed in Malabar region. 
  • Cassava is a staple food for millions of people in tropical countries around the world. 
  • Cassava is the third largest source of food carbohydrates in the tropics after rice and maize.
  • Nigeria is the world's largest producer of Cassava while Thailand is the largest exporter of Cassava starch,Tapioca.
  •  As mentioned in thehindu.com ,Cassava is the most drought-tolerant crop.Cassava was imported from Brazil and introduced in Kerala by king Vishakham Thirunaal Raam Varma after a severe famine hit Travancore and as a preventive measure to survive the same again in future without any food shortage .
  • Cassava root is mistakenly referred as Tapioca by many(For Ex- ME!) but as a matter of fact,Tapioca is the starch extracted from the cassava roots .
  • Cassava root is gluten free,grain free and nut free and so is gaining popularity among people with food allergies especially abroad.
  • Cassava should be prepared and cooked fully to prevent any cyanide poisoning .#HolyMacromollyπŸ˜±πŸ’€
  • As mentioned in naturalfoodseries.com , Cassava paste made with peel can be an excellent facemask to smoothen and brighten skin ,helps with hair fall/hair growth,helps with Migraine/headaches,heals wounds etc .(Looks like a scope for an exotic beauty spa with the "it" ingredient "The cassava",all I've to do is pick some cassava roots from my home ..What a low investment business opportunity…hmmm !!πŸ˜ŽπŸ˜‹ )(Also I am addicted to natural face masks as I am curious to know what magic it can do to my skin and most importantly, one of my surefire way to scare the people around me …eeehaa ...always works like a charm !!πŸ˜ˆπŸ™Š)..I love you MORE Kappakutty !
  • As mentioned in drhealthbenefits.com ,Cassava roots are good for digestive health ,diabetes control,cholestrol control,Blood Pressure control,builds strong bones and teeth,good for weight loss,cancer prevention,boost immune system,prevents anemia,helps in alleviating stress and anxiety .
  •  In USA,Cassava is known as Yuca/Manioc/Brazilian Arrowroot .

OMG !! That was quite a revelation,like a Cassava G.K. class for me that I didn't dare to sleep off πŸ‘€...Thanks to my blog for improving my G.K. and IQ !! #YoursTrulyBuJi/BuddhiJeevi πŸ™Œ


When we were in North India,we used to live in company quarters ,neither so spacious nor so conjusted .No one seemed to have any complaints - ollathu kondu Onam (With whatever we had,it was like Onam).And we were very lucky that our quarter was blessed with a long backyard and my parents would fill it with Cassava stems and other vegetable plantations.


We had Banana trees,Moringa trees,Pears and many other daily use vegetables and it was fun to watch them grow and these Cassava plants they grow really tall and I fondly remember playing with my chaddi friends/Childhood friends around all the cassava plants as if it was a maze/labyrinth.(Oh how I miss all my childhood friends whom I've lost contact with ! Can I do a time travel back to those carefree days dear Science??)

Once these Cassava roots matured and were harvested,they all would be quickly distributed to all Malayalee families we were aquainted with,nicely wrapped in old newspaper and the recipient would be overjoyed to get them like an edible piece of Kerala .

And it was/is always a special kind of happiness to cook with vegetables grown in our own backyard..They tasted natural,healthy and heavenly !! With the leftovers,Amma used to prepare many Cassava root/Kappa recipes traditional Kerala style like Boiled Kappa with different types of chamanthi/chutneys ,Kappa chips,Kappa puzhukku and Kappa Vevichathu with meen curry .

Like I mentioned before,these Kappa recipes are an instant hit among Malayalees and hot-seller nowadays from small food shops to top restaurants and the "It" food item served in houseboats . 

In US,we do get Cassava roots/Kappa but they are heavily waxed and flavorless and then we also get frozen Cassava roots all peeled and either cubed or chopped.Even though I am not a fan of both - waxed or frozen foods,there are days when our taste buds would crave for the taste of Kerala derived from Kappa and spicy fish curry .


 Then I would go for the frozen way as I find them more tasteful even though not fresh and also quite convenient to cook as I don't have to peel,chop or cube them πŸ˜‹ (Chopping Kappa is an art by itself,the main job!!) . So,simply cook them directly for any recipes and like the Malayalam saying ,"Gathi kettal puli,pullum thinnum"(meaning when there is no other choice,a tiger may feed on grass) ,they taste nostalgically delicious to us.πŸ˜„πŸ˜‰πŸ˜‹ #PaavamNRIS


Our most favourite kappa recipe is Kappa vevichathu with spicy meen curry/fish curry Kerala style served along piping hot boiled rice,fish fry,some vegetable side-dish ,mozhu curry/yogurt/curd based curry and other curries ..(Ok that's my mother's style with 10000 curries😏 ) ...I usually make 2-3 curries max unless it's Sadya ...

So,today I am gonna show you how to make the most famous and well-liked Kappa recipe my mother's style:

Kappa Vevichathu|Mashed Cassava root Kerala style
Cassava root/Kappa - 1 Kilo
Water as needed
Salt to taste
For ground paste:
Coconut,grated - 1/4th - 1 Cup
Garlic,peeled - 5-6 Nos.
Cumin seeds/powder - 1/2 Tsp
Green chillies/Broken red chillies - 2 Nos.
Curry leaves - a few
Turmeric powder - 1/4th Tsp
Water - 1-2 Tbsp


Preparation method of Kappa Vevichathu
  1. Put your finger-cap for sure.Cut off the both ends of a kappa.If kappa is too long,cut them into big chunks and /or make a long slit with a sharp knife and then with the sharp tip of the knife,pierce through the thick brown skin in such a way that the skin comes out leaving the white fleshy part ,which will be used for cooking.
  2. Then chop the kappa into small cubes/pieces against the string in the center,rotating the kappa to do so further. Discarding the string later.
  3. Once all kappa pieces are chopped ,wash them well for 3-4 times to remove any impurities/mud..
  4. Then transfer the chopped kappa pieces into a deep pot with water covering them about 1 inch above.Cover with a lid.
  5.  Let it boil on high flame ,then reduce the flame until they become tender and well-cooked.
  6.  Carefully,remove the lid and take a piece or two and try to break it ,when it breaks/gets mashed between fingers it means they are cooked.
  7. Then remove the pot and drain the water off .
  8. Put the pot with kappa back to the stove on low flame till all water evaporates.
  9. In a mixer jar,grind everything except the grated coconut into a smooth paste and then grind the coconut into a semi-coarse paste.
  10. Add this paste to the point No.8 ,mix well and mash the tapioca with a masher for a few minutes.
  11. Then put off the  flame.
  12. That's it Kappa vevichathu is ready !!
  13. Enjoy with spicy fish curry/Chicken curry !
OR,watch this kappa vevichathu video to learn especially to chop the kappa aptly and to make the kappa recipe properly .

Kappa vevichathu always makes my lunch/dinner super yummy.LOVE IT! I will never get bored of it .We used to have lots of Cassava plants at home here.But now,because of some smarty-pant rodents ,we hardly get any good number of Kappa anymore.These little rogues can bypass any rodent-killer baits.Hence,my parents are losing interest to plant kappa anymore.😞

I used to feel proud to see all those kappa trees standing tall and free ,ready to be harvested as a result of my parents hard work (which no matter how old they become,I wish they remain physically active like this too always and rely on laborers less unless they can't at all).Needless to say,it hurts to see my father buying kappa from market nowadays more.😟#YouJealousRodentsIhateYou


Dear God,if you can't fix Corona soon,can you pls send/show us a foolproof method to nip these little evils destroying my kappas ..plsss..πŸ’”πŸ™

Hope we will soon find a hell-bent solution to fix these shrewd culprits.#Vidamatte 😈

Nevertheless,don't give up any opportunity you get to taste/enjoy any Kappa recipes by any means and do try my Kappa vevichathu traditional Kerala style my Amma's way too .You won't regret either !

By the by,I am glad to post this on World environment day and I believe,environment/nature wise,should be the happiest environment day ever as finally our mother nature is breathing well.

Mother nature send us so many warnings in the form of dreadful floods,monster tsunamis,revengeful cyclones/hurricanes/tornadoes etc etc etc and then we suffered ,cried,called for help,together we fought to survive and when everything became normal ,we were back to square one with amnesia and we again tend to forget and under-estimate our Mother nature that she had been suffering or crying since long .

Like a mother she gave us everything,she reminded us to live in harmony ,peace and in good health but we human are so preoccupied with our life ,little arrogant with our technological developments that I won't be surprised if human race may regard themselves to be the ultimate super-power,"The GOD" !

I feel we are going that way ,that's why mother nature and God paired up and intervened to show us "Who is the real and the ultimate BOSS ?".Outcome - COVID 19/Corona !! #EnoughIsEnough

Now they are like,"Hey human,go home,sit inside,wanna go outside,keep your bloody mouth shut,put that mask on ,you think you can do anything with your hands - conquer the world even if you may have to harm other living beings ,sanitize yourself at least your hands and keep a distance at least for your own safety ."

Oh you are getting bored at home ? Now you got enough time to contemplate,reflect,rethink not just with your super smart mind but also from your heart .Were you careless before ? Do you know what compassion is ? Do you truly believe in harmony? Do you really know what really matters to you ?

Looks like God and mother nature's plan is working .Now Mother nature is more clean - less pollution,more plants/greens ,animals roaming more peacefully ,kind of balancing the ecosystem BUT at a heavy price - loss of human lives uncontrollably ,challenging science in every way ,reminding the decline of spiritual inclination.

This is my personal take and couldn't stop myself from expressing my concern bottled up inside on this environment day.I strongly believe,COVID is a wake up call to humanity from Mother nature/God,the supreme power ,that step aside the rat race for a while,take a deep breath,relax,be mindful and hearty and co-exist,take good care of ourself,everything around us,the environment/Mother nature  and our beauty FULL planet Earth !#HappyEnvironmentDay :)

Who wants to join me ?? All swargathil katturmbs/kabab mein haddis are welcome ;)
DAMN, I am hungry ..Gotta go...my Kappa vevichathu is waiting for me ..My date tonight !! πŸ˜ŽπŸ˜‰πŸ’ƒ

By the way did you read my entire post ,then kudos to your patience and thanks a lot for bearing with me as always !!πŸ‘ŠπŸ™πŸ˜‰πŸ˜ŽπŸ˜€

Take care πŸ‘‹


P.S. Thanks Prabhakar for choosing my blog as one of India's top blog in your 10th edition of top blog directories and more than that the inputs you gave me couple of years ago,really helped me to revamp my blog.Don't know who you are but truly appreciate your sincere inputs ,the best I ever got!! #GotMyBadgePlacedOnBlog #HappilyGratefulMyFriendπŸ™πŸ˜Š

P.P.S: To the one reader who emailed me ,"Why I use Moto g7 -Manjusha watermark in my pics?"

Answer:Out of my sheer laziness !πŸ˜€ This is a feautre in my phone .So,when selected,my pics automatically gets watermarked by default and in that way I don't have to type in all my pics the copyright symbol with my blog name as we bloggers do.Moreover,though it is Motorola's logo,I love that "M" symbol a lot .πŸ˜‰πŸ˜Š