Smoked Paprika & Sumac Tapioca Chips
Why This Recipe Works
by Sasha Marx
Making puffed snack chips at home is easier than you might think. Tapioca starch lends itself well to puffing, and its neutral flavor allows for a lot of creativity in flavoring—here we dust them with a mix of smoked paprika and sumac (the non-poisonous, fruity, acidic kind). The tapioca chips in this recipe are called “glasses” in the puffed-snack industry. Dave Arnold from the International Culinary Center has a great piece on puffed items in which he explains how amylose in starch gelatinizes when cooked with a liquid and traps water in its structure. This trapped water turns to steam in the hot frying oil, rapidly expanding and causing the chips to puff. We think these chips are the perfect gateway (and game-day) snack to get into the world of DIY puffed deliciousness. Fair warning: Working with the tapioca starch mixture is a little bit like wrangling Slimer into a ghost trap—messy and sticky but, in our opinion, a heck of a lot of fun.