You did not misread the headline. This is not about the popular and well-known local staple, Cassava Bread. This is about the cassava I put in my regular bread mix to make soft white bread.
Adding freshly grated cassava to flour is nothing new, we make it for baking and dumplings, but I have never added it to flour to make bread, until now. Often when I am making bread and want to add more fiber or make it a little healthier, I choose a mix of white and some kind of whole flour. However, when it comes to gluten-free flour made from ingredients such as ground provisions, I stay away from those. Instead, I use the ground provisions in their fresh condition – raw or partially cooked and then mashed. I find the texture much more pleasant and I don’t have to add more ingredients than the recipe calls for to keep the bread moist and tender. The dry flour always needs more water to rehydrate and bloom (understandably so). And with some of those flour, I find their flavors a bit more pronounced in the baked goods than I like, like breadfruit. Of course, it’s all a matter of personal preference and taste; always do what works for you and what pleases you.
I wanted to share my experience with you because the bread and rolls turned out really well, the texture soft. One of the things is that I didn’t have to use any water to make the dough because of the rich moisture from the grated cassava. I really like this bread and I think you will too. Here’s the other thing about using ground provisions in their fresh, raw condition – they cost significantly less than the same ingredients in their dry, ground form: flour.
Before we get to the recipe, I know that you can frown upon the idea of grating cassava by hand. Guess what, you don’t have to. Years ago, since I discovered the wonderful texture and ease of work of cassava puree in an electric mixer, I will never grate cassava by hand anymore. Here’s how to mix-grate the cassava.
Peel the cassava and cut into 1 to 1 and ½ inch pieces, add to a jug mixer and using a little water at a time, mix the puree until smooth. The final mixture should be thick and moist without being loose and watery. Work in batches!
Bread with Cassava
Product: 2 (9 x 5) loaves or 1 large loaf / 12 rolls
Bespoke 1 lbs white flour, plus extra work surface
1 tsp dry instant yeast
1 teaspoon fine table salt
2 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp melted butter
2 cups grated cassava
Oil – to rub dough and bowl
Mix the flour, yeast, salt and sugar together, then rub in melted butter.
Add the cassava and mix to form a dough.
Generously flour a work surface, transfer the dough to the surface and knead for 10 minutes until smooth. You needed to add a dusting of flour as you worked.
Rub the oil with dough and transfer to an oily bowl. Cover and rest for 90 minutes or until the dough has more than doubled in size.
Prepare pans by rubbing with oil, or, if you are making rolls, line a 13 x 18-inch sheet pan with parchment paper.
Punch down the raised dough, massage for 2 minutes and then divide evenly to make 2 small loaves or divide them into 12 pieces and form into balls.
Place the sides of the dough seam in the pans, dab lightly with oil and cover freely with plastic wrap and let rise for 45 minutes.
25 minutes into the second rise, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F for 20 minutes.
Transfer pans to oven and bake for 25 – 30 minutes or until bread is brown.
Remove pans from oven and rest for 7 minutes before removing from pans and placing on wire rack (s) to cool.
Serve warm or at room temperature.
I wanted to decorate my bread rolls, so I brushed them with an egg wash (1 room temperature egg beaten with 1 tablespoon of water) and sprinkled them with sesame seeds. You can use poppy seeds, pumpkin seeds or whole oats instead of sesame seeds.
Let me know how it happened to you.