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Jicama substitute?

Discussion in 'Recipes and Tips' started by wadesgirl, Feb 23, 2011.

  1. wadesgirl

    wadesgirl Legend Member Gold Member

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    I have a consultant on my team who wants to try the new salsa but cannot find jicama any where close to her. What should I suggest instead?
     
    Feb 23, 2011
    #1
  2. babywings76

    babywings76 Legend Member Gold Member

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    Someone in my cluster suggested an Asian Pear. Water chestnuts are the right kind of texture, but not the right flavor.
     
    Feb 23, 2011
    #2
  3. loreo

    loreo Banned

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    I was also going to suggest some type of pear. I think an Asian Pear would work just fine :)
     
    Feb 23, 2011
    #3
  4. mountainmama74

    mountainmama74 Advanced Member Gold Member

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    So jicama is sweet? I remember seeing it at one store here, but I haven't found it again yet!
     
  5. babywings76

    babywings76 Legend Member Gold Member

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    Yep, it's crunchy like a water chestnut, but it is sweet. So delicious! :)
     
    Feb 23, 2011
    #5
  6. wadesgirl

    wadesgirl Legend Member Gold Member

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    I thought of it as a crunchy "sweet" potato - like a cross of a potato and an apple.
     
    Feb 23, 2011
    #6
  7. BethCooks4U

    BethCooks4U Legend Member Gold Member

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    We must have bad jicama here as I never noticed a sweet taste. It tastes dry to me, in fact I have thought that water chestnuts would be a good substitute. Interesting. Maybe it IS my tastebuds.
     
    Feb 23, 2011
    #7
  8. Barry Carlton

    Barry Carlton Member

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    I have never found what I consider to be a good one in Boise either.
     
    Feb 23, 2011
    #8
  9. Brenda.the.chef

    Brenda.the.chef Advanced Member Gold Member

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    asian pears and granny smith apples are the best substitutes. If you don't want as sweet, radishes or water chestnuts work best.

    Asian pears can be quite pricey though, so I usually use the granny smith if jicama isn't available.
     
  10. loreo

    loreo Banned

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    Isn't the Granny Smith rather tart?
     
    Feb 23, 2011
    #10
  11. Brenda.the.chef

    Brenda.the.chef Advanced Member Gold Member

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    yes. Jicama isn't really sweet. It's got a very slight sweetness to it. So hard to describe. I just find that the granny smith is the most reliable flavor wise as a raw substitute. When a recipe calls for cooked jicama and you can't find it, I use water chestnuts.
     
    1 person likes this.
  12. heather223

    heather223 Veteran Member Gold Member

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    Great info., Thank you!
     
    Feb 23, 2011
    #12
  13. lesliec

    lesliec Veteran Member

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    I used a red delicious apple the other day and it was a bit too sweet, so I think a granny smith might work great.
     
    Feb 23, 2011
    #13
  14. loreo

    loreo Banned

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    So thankful for this thread! Last night my host was so proud that she was able to find a jicama. Went to prep it and it was ...a rutabaga!!!
    Fortunately she had an apple and all was well!
    Live and learn ;)
     
    Feb 27, 2011
    #14
  15. wadesgirl

    wadesgirl Legend Member Gold Member

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    Oops!! Did you try it to see a difference?
     
    Feb 27, 2011
    #15
  16. amyscookinggear

    amyscookinggear Member Gold Member

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    Grocery stores to try:
    Walmart
    Any Mexican Grocery store (I drove all over and it just dawned on me that there is a Mexican Grocery store next door)
     
  17. wadesgirl

    wadesgirl Legend Member Gold Member

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    She sort of live out in the middle of now where and did try the closest WalMart to her.
     
    Feb 27, 2011
    #17
  18. lt1jane

    lt1jane Veteran Member Gold Member

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    ALL of Iowa for the most part is in the middle of nowhere...

    I was born and raised there so I have personal experience and am not just dissing the state. I was born in Maquoketa, lived in Clinton for a year, moved to Britt, and spent my Jr High and High School years in Cedar Rapids. I am proud to say that I am FROM Iowa (but it does mean I left... ;) )
     
    Feb 27, 2011
    #18
  19. loreo

    loreo Banned

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    I didn't. I've not been feeling well ( gall bladder I think :() and didn't want to risk it. Everyone else loved it though!
     
    Feb 27, 2011
    #19
  20. esavvymom

    esavvymom Legend Member Staff Member

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    I've made the salsa twice without the jicama or a substitute, and it was still delicious. My DH loved it so much that he bought 2 mangoes, the largest red onion I've ever seen, and about 6 jalapenos at the store today so I could make a batch for him before I left town for the week. HAHAHA- he didn't know how much of anything was in it.

    I'd be curious how it tastes with a Granny Smith.
     
    Feb 27, 2011
    #20
  21. heather223

    heather223 Veteran Member Gold Member

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    I used Granny Smith in mine today and it was delicious (and I forgot the jalpeno! and refuse to put cilantro in it.)
     
    Feb 27, 2011
    #21
  22. gailz2

    gailz2 Senior Member Gold Member

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    We were introduced to Jicama on our trip to Mexico last fall. They consider it like a potato, serve it raw, in wedges with lime and salt on it. I had a waiter bring one to me so I'd know what it was. I never thought of it as being sweet, but is a great snack for kids.
     
    Feb 28, 2011
    #22
  23. pchockeymom

    pchockeymom Veteran Member

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    I made it the other day but couldn't find the jicama (always forget how to pronounce it too). I added pineapple instead and it was FABULOUS!!!
     
    Feb 28, 2011
    #23
  24. wadesgirl

    wadesgirl Legend Member Gold Member

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    I guess when I say sweet I mean it reminds me a lot of a potato but has a little bit of a sweeter taste to it than a potato.
     
    Feb 28, 2011
    #24
  25. Malinda Klein

    Malinda Klein Advanced Member Gold Member

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    jicama - pronounce it like "hick"+ "a"+ "Ma"

    I couldn't find a jicama at Walmart. The lady said they come in occasionally...
     
  26. BethCooks4U

    BethCooks4U Legend Member Gold Member

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    Funny... Walmart if the only place around here that I can find it.
     
    Feb 28, 2011
    #26
  27. gailz2

    gailz2 Senior Member Gold Member

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    I agree. Substituting an Asian Pear in it's place sounds good to me.
     
    Feb 28, 2011
    #27
  28. AJPratt

    AJPratt Legend Member Silver Member

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    So glad I found this thread!
     
    Mar 20, 2011
    #28
  29. gaddischef

    gaddischef Member Gold Member

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    I usually just make it without and it is really good. I'll try the Asian Pear or Granny Smith apple next time - thanks!
     
    Mar 20, 2011
    #29
  30. cookinfletch

    cookinfletch Member Gold Member

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    I used a Gala apple & it was great!
     
    Mar 21, 2011
    #30
  31. esavvymom

    esavvymom Legend Member Staff Member

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    I've made mine without, and I've used Granny Smith apples. Both work well for the salsa.. For the Cool & Crunchy Chicken Tacos/Salad- I used the apple.

    BUT, my host on Saturday had found the jicama at a Food Lion! (To me, it's like the "lowest" grocery store in our area for selection. I was then able to find it at a Food Lion near me as well. I haven't tried my other stores....I've asked at most of them and no one knew what I was even talking about. But when I found it at Food Lion- it was in the section with the various Squash. My host said near their loose potatoes and squash. It has the shape of a large vidalia onion- but a skin like a white potato or ginger.

    We did learn at the show that jicama is a tougher fruit/veggie to chop - it got wedged in the blades of the MFP. But once we got it off the blades, it chopped up ok. (It was my first time using the jicama.)
     
    Mar 21, 2011
    #31
  32. BethCooks4U

    BethCooks4U Legend Member Gold Member

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    I haven't found it at our Food Lion but our Lowes Foods has a sign saying where it belongs on the shelf - I've looked every week in a year and they never have it in but the sign remains. :grumpy: I find it at Walmart.
     
    Mar 21, 2011
    #32
  33. Bren706

    Bren706 Senior Member Gold Member

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    Made the salsa for the first time this week. Our store did not have jicama or asian pears in stock, so I tried a bosc pear. The salsa was sooooo yummy!!!! I was even proud of myself for using a fresh jalapeno for the first time (have always been nervous about getting the burning oils on me). Next time I will try using the Granny Smith apple if the jicama or asian pear is not available.
     
    Apr 10, 2011
    #33
  34. Teresa LM

    Teresa LM Advanced Member

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    Watch out for those peppers! I don't ever want to go there again! The burn hurts big time! I will never do hot peppers without some sort of protection and I don't know why any "chef" would. Those things are nothing to mess around with!
     
    Apr 10, 2011
    #34
  35. Rhonda-Roo

    Rhonda-Roo Member

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    I'm in southern Indiana & found one at Meijers. We tried the Jicama in the salsa last week & it was terrible! We gave the salsa to a friend. I'm not sure if they ate it, but there was no way I could. I'm not a picky eater, but this was NASTY! I had never tasted Jicama before so I didn't know what to expect. There was no sign so I never would have found it if it wasn't for a young employee who showed us where they were. How can you tell if you have a bad one?
     
    Apr 11, 2011
    #35
  36. wadesgirl

    wadesgirl Legend Member Gold Member

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    You should put a lot in it that it over powers the salsa. Did you try the jicama by itself to make sure that's what you were tasting?
     
    Apr 11, 2011
    #36
  37. ChefBeckyD

    ChefBeckyD Legend Member Gold Member

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    Any jicama I've ever had has been very mild tasting. Are you sure what you had was a Jicama?
     
    Apr 11, 2011
    #37
  38. ShellBeach

    ShellBeach Veteran Member

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    I'm thinking that wasn't really a jicama, too!
     
    Apr 11, 2011
    #38
  39. esavvymom

    esavvymom Legend Member Staff Member

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    The jicama I found has the shape of a vidalia or even a red onion, but the skin looks more like a potato's skin. The texture and color inside is that of a water chestnut.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Apr 11, 2011
    #39
  40. ShellBeach

    ShellBeach Veteran Member

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    hmmm...I think the skin looks more like turnip, beet, or parsnip. Thicker than potato skin, definitley.
     
    Apr 11, 2011
    #40
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