Last week I ordered tapioca flour from Amazon ( find your tapioca here US UK Germany Canada ). Since I started to go vegan, I find that tapioca flour is a perfect ingredient to add to recipes that call for some binding factor and for achieving a melting and gummy consistency, like those of cheese or some pastries. Tapioca is also gluten-free and hence perfect for gluten-intolerant people .
Tapioca is starchy flour made from the roots of cassava. This plant is native from South America. As a Brazilian, I am very familiar with the cassava and with tapioca flour. Cassava roots are a staple food in my family back in Brazil. My parents always grow it for own consumption. On the picture bellow you see my dad proudly showing the roots of a cassava plant that he had just dig out of the soil. This picture was taken in August, when it’s still winter in Southern Brazil. Because of the cold weather, the cassava plants lose their leaves. The roots, on the other hand, stay healthy and perfect for harvesting for several months. Usually my parents will only harvest the roots of one plant at the time, eat them and then dig out another plant for the next meal.
Coming back to the the tapioca flour, Brazilians generally use it to make the famous cheeseballs (pao-de-queijo). In addition, tapioca flour is use to prepare something similar to a flat pancake – as I often had it while living in Olinda, Northeast of Brazil – which can be filled with vegan cheese, bananas, shredded coconut, chocolate, etc. When tapioca flour is heated up, the small granules bind together like glue, forming a sort of “pancake”.
To create this vegan omelet was quite simple: I know that chickpea flour mixed with water thickens very quickly when boiled and that tapioca has this amazing properties of “binding and melting”. Then, it was just a matter of experimenting the idea of mixing both, adding some turmeric for a yellowish color, and bang!!!! The result was amazing. I made this same recipe many times since then, mixing some tomatoes, green onions, mushrooms, etc.
- 1/3 cup (80 ml) of tapioca flour
- 1/2 cup (120 ml) of chickpea flour
- 150 ml of water
- 1 teaspoon of baking powder
- Salt to taste (alternatively you may use black salt to allow a egg-like taste)
- Turmeric (optional - it turns the omelet more yellow)
- Fillings (optional): chopped tomatoes, mushrooms, spinach, onions, vegan cheese, etc...
- Steps are show in the pictures bellow
- In a bowl, combine tapioca, chickpea flour, baking powder, turmeric and salt. Slowly add the water, whisking very well till you don’t see any clumps.
- In a non-stick pan, add a little of oil. Pour the mix.Gently start to drag the cooked portions towards the center (like a normal egg omelet). When the top is thickened, add the filling, fold the omelet in half. Let it cook a little, and flip to cook the other side. Alternatively, you could add whatever veggies and seasoning you like in the mix, and cook it like a pancake.
- Yields 2 medium omelets
- Adding a pinch of black salt to the mix will allow a egg-like taste!
- If you are not used with the taste of chickpea flour, just add more fillings and more seasons to the mix.