Cassava tapai or fermented cassava is soft, sweet, yeasty, slightly tangy, and alcoholic. It can be eaten as a snack or as an ingredient in desserts.
- Indonesia: tapai ketela, tapai ubi kayu (Minangkabau), tape singkong, tape telo, peuyeum (Sundanese)
- Malaysia: tapai ubi kayu
- Philippines: binuburang kamoteng kahoy, binuburang balanghoy, tapay panggi, tapay a banggala
What is Tapai?
Tapai or tape is a traditional fermented preparation of starchy food such as rice and other starchy roots like cassava for example. It is found throughout much of Southeast Asia and parts of East Asia.
Tapai is made by fermenting using rice yeast. This type of yeast used is the same as the one used to make Chinese rice wine. Making rice wine takes months to get the wine, but the tapai process takes only bout 4-5 days. Therefore, the longer you ferment it, the stronger the alcohol taste is going to be.
Tell Me More About Cassava Tapai
- Taste. Sweet, slightly tangy, and yeasty. If left fermented for a longer time, it has a strong alcoholic taste.
- Texture. Soft, moist, and can be easily mashed with a fork.
- Smell. It has a faint aroma of alcohol similar to rice wine.
How Cassava Tapai is Made
- Boil or steam cassava until cooked.
- Cool cassava completely. Starting from this point, don’t touch cassava with your hand to keep it sterile.
- Mash rice yeast with the back of a spoon until ground.
- Sprinkle the ground rice yeast and granulated sugar onto cassava, rotating it to make sure each side is covered in yeast. Then, put the cassava into an airtight container or you can line the container with clean banana leaves. It is said that banana leaves help to speed up the fermentation process. Place the container in a dark and warm place. Ferment for 2-4 days until the cassava is soft with a distinctive alcohol smell. Keep tapai in the refrigerator for a few days to improve its flavor. You can store cassava tapai in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.