Note: Aji amarillo is a sweet yellow chili paste that can be found in most Latin markets with Peruvian ingredients. It can be omitted or replaced with a few dashes of your favorite hot sauce.
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- Yield:serves 4
- Active time: 15 minutes
- Total time:35 minutes
- 1 1/2 pounds fresh yuca (about 2 roots)
- Kosher salt
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons aji amarillo paste (see note above)
- 1 tablespoon juice from 1 lime
- 1 jalapeño pepper, stems and seeds removed, roughly chopped.
- 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh cilantro leaves
- 2 tablespoons grated cotija, romano, or feta cheese
- 2 quarts peanut or vegetable oil
Peel yuca, split in half crosswise, and cut into 1/2- to 3/4-inch thick batons. Place in a pot and cover with cold water by 2 inches. Season well with salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce to a simmer, and cook until tender and yuca is starting to fray, about 15 minutes. Drain.
While yuca is cooking, combine mayonnaise, aji amarillo, lime juice, jalapeño, cilantro, and cheese in the jar of a blender and blend on high speed until smooth. Alternatively, blend in a up with a hand blender. Season to taste with salt if necessary. Set aside.
When yuca is boiled, heat oil to 350°F in a fryer, Dutch oven, or large wok over high heat. Adjust flame to maintain temperature. Add yuca and cook, agitating and flipping frequently, until golden brown and crisp, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined tray and shake to drain. Season with salt. Serve immediately with sauce for dipping.