Carimañolas are a traditional snack or appetizer from the Caribbean coast of Colombia. They are little balls made of cassava (commonly known as yuca) and stuffed with meat or cheese. These delicious Carimañolas are stuffed with Tropical Quesito Colombiano, which gives them a truly authentic flavor. Yuca, or cassava, is a starchy root vegetable and is a staple in many Latin American countries; it’s similar to a potato. You can prepare Carimañolas with fresh cassava or buy it frozen at supermarkets; both work equally well.
- 1 ½ lb of cassava/yuca (fresh or frozen), in pieces
- Water (enough to cover)
- 3 cups or more of Quesito Colombiano (crumbled)
- Salt to taste
- Oil for frying
- Boil the cassava: Add salt to a medium-large pot with the cassava in water. Cover and bring it to a boil on high heat. Then reduce the fire to medium-low and cook until the cassava is tender (around 15 minutes). Drain and let it cool.
- Prepare the cassava dough: When it’s cool enough, remove the veins in the center of the cassava (or do it before boiling if using fresh cassava). Mash it thoroughly using your hands or a masher until the dough is smooth. Add salt if needed.
- Shape the carimañolas: Put some oil in your hands because the dough can be sticky. Take a small amount of dough and shape it into a ball with your hands. Flatten it like a disc, then fold it in half like a taco, and stuff it with 1 tablespoon of Quesito Colombiano cheese. Close it and make sure it’s sealed on all sides. Do the same with the rest of the dough.
- Fry them and enjoy: In a pot with oil, deep fry the carimañolas at 350ºF (180ºC) for about 5 minutes or until golden brown. Put them on a paper towel to absorb the excess oil before serving. Enjoy!