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JICAMA

Jicama

Pronounced “Hee-cah-mah”, this Mexican root vegetable has a striking resemblance to a big brown turnip. Its exterior is made of a thick skin and is quite the contrast to its crisp and slightly sweet interior. It has a refreshing, juicy flesh that is sweet and crunchy and will remind you of water chestnuts.

Picking & Storing:

When selecting a jicama, make sure it is firm and heavy for its size. It should also show no signs of shriveling.

Your unwashed jicama can be stored in a cool, dark place for up to three weeks.  Once it’s peeled and cut, it can be stored wrapped in the fridge for up to one week.

Preparing:

Cooking techniques include: steamed, baked, boiled, fried or blanched to retain its crispness.

When ready to use, scrub the jicama first.  Then peel with a vegetable peeler or knife and be sure to remove the white fibrous layer.  Depending on what you are making with your jicama, you can slice, dice, shred or julienne strips.

Jicama can be used in many dishes such as: soups (toss them in at the end so they retain their crunch) chicken salad, stir-fry’s (in place of water chestnuts), a raw veggie tray, salads, mashed like a potato or thinly sliced on sandwiches.

Jicama Tips:

  • Once cut, drop it in some acidulated water to keep it from turning brown if you are not going to be using with it right away.
  • For every pound of jicama, you will get about three cups chopped.
  • To add a little crunch to your salad, try adding shredded jicama.
  • Jicama is low in starch, low in calories, low in sodium, and has no fat. Jicama is also high in fibre and vitamin C.

Jicama goes well with:

Jicama goes really well with acidic fruits and juices such as lime, lemon and orange juice. You also may be surprised to know that it is complemented by ground red pepper and hot pepper sauce. Jicama is also a natural fit for Mexican cuisine and goes well with avocado, cilantro, cucumber and grapefruit.

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