The first time I had cassava pie was at a church potluck, I thought it was chimodho. I was so happy to have found a piece of Zimbabwe. I was wrong!
I don’t know if anywhere else they make cassava pie, I have only ever seen or ate it in Bermuda. It is one of the special dishes for Christmas here. Some versions have chicken or pork. I like the vegetarian pie because it tastes like chimodho made with the course maize meal. It takes me back to my grandmother’s kitchen in Gandami.
Mufarinya(cassava) is not widely eaten or grown in Zimbabwe. My mom grew it once and it was relatively easy and I think we should eat it more. As I remember we only grew it once because at the time we did not know how to prepare it. There are two kinds of cassava, sweet and bitter. The bitter one can be poisonous when not prepared properly. I don’t remember whether we ate it or not. I am going to encourage her to grow more cassava.
Each family has its own version of the recipe. I used one from the local supermarkets here. It uses store bought already prepared for you which saves time as the pie itself takes time to cook.
- 5 lb. grated or ground cassava
- 1 lb. sugar
- 1 can sweetened condensed milk
- 13 eggs
- 1 lb. butter
- 1-½ tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Place cassava in large bowl. Cover with sugar. Let stand 15 minutes.
- Add condensed milk, eggs, butter, salt, nutmeg, and vanilla. Mix well.
- In large baking dish, pour the cassava mixture.
- Cook in oven at 350°F for one hour and then reduce heat to 250°F and cook 2-2½ hours until done.