First off, what is Jicama? Jicama is a crispy, sweet, edible root that resembles a turnip in physical appearance, although the plants are not related. It has been cultivated in South America for centuries, and the vegetable is quite popular in Mexican cuisine. It has a unique flavor that lends itself well to salads, salsas, and vegetable platters. The roots can sometimes grow to be quite large, although when they exceed the size of two fists, they begin to convert the sugars that give jicama its sweet flavor into starches, making the root somewhat woody to the taste.
When choosing jicama at the store, look for medium sized, firm tubers with dry roots. Do not purchase jicama that has wet or soft spots, which may indicate rot, and don’t be drawn to overlarge examples of the tuber, because they may not be as flavorful. It will keep under refrigeration for up to two weeks.
I have only tried it in salads, or by itself with a little salt, cumin and lime juice. You don’t really need anything else!
I got jicama at the store, and wanted to make a fresh tasting salad that included other vegetables as well, this recipe was a success. It has the acidity of the limes and a nice crunch from the vegetables. This is another type of salad I can get on board with. I left out the orange and the avocado, but just because I didn’t have any available at home that day. I have left them in the recipe because next time I try this I’ll be sure to include them.
From Simply Recipes
1 large jicama (about 1 1/2 pounds), peeled, then julienned or cubed (easiest to work with if you cut the jicama in half first)
1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 yellow bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 green bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/2 a large cucumber, seeded, chopped
1 navel orange, peel cut away, sliced crosswise, then each round quartered
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/3 cup lime juice
Pinch of cayenne
Pinch of paprika
1/2 avocado chopped
2 Tbsp olive oil
- Toss together the jicama, bell peppers, red onion, cucumber, orange, and cilantro in a large serving bowl.
- Pour lime juice over all.
- Sprinkle with a pinch of cayenne and paprika. Season generously with salt.
- Let sit a half an hour before serving.
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