Cassava (or ubi) is one of the most important source of carbohydrates in Indonesian diet. In some remote part of the region, it is used as staple food, substituting rice. The leaves are high in protein, and in some part of Sumatra there is a famous dish made from the puree of the leaves cooked in coconut milk.
I always have this in Batak restaurant, or Padang restaurant. The way it is prepared in both cultures is almost the same with slightly different spices used. This dish is called daun ubi tumbuk, or cassava leaf puree cooked in coconut milk. Extremely delicious to be eaten with steamed rice. The velvety texture of the leaves marries well with the thick coconut milk. The dish is really rich in flavor.
At home, we prepared the leaves by grinding them using wooden mortar and pestle. They can also be chopped finely – the end result would be the same, although purists would definitely disapprove of it. Some added dried shrimp or anchovies for extra pungency. The vegetarian version would use pea eggplants, grinded together with the leaves. The leaves and spices are then cooked for a long time to soften them to a puree consistency
Daun ubi tumbuk – cassava leaf puree with coconut milk
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