Place yuca in large saucepan; add enough water to completely cover yuca. Bring to boil on medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer 15 min. or until tender but not soft. Drain. Cool. Meanwhile, combine tomato paste, cumin and dressing in large skillet. Stir in onions. Cook on medium-high heat 3 min. or until onions are tender. Add meat and pepper; mix well. Cook 15 min. or until meat is no longer pink, stirring occasionally.
Place yuca and cream cheese in large bowl; mash well. Add 2 of the eggs, one at a time, stirring until well blended after each addition. Gradually add flour, stirring until mixture forms a stiff dough. (If dough is too soft, mix in an additional 1 Tbsp. flour.) Shape 1/4 cup of the dough into a ball. Press a deep hole into center of ball with your finger; fill hole with 2 tsp. of the meat mixture. Reshape ball to completely enclose filling. Repeat with remaining dough and meat mixture to form a total of 20 balls; set aside. Beat remaining egg with the 1 tsp. water in shallow bowl or pie plate. Place cracker crumbs in separate shallow bowl or pie plate. Dip yuca balls in the egg mixture, then in the cracker crumbs, turning to evenly coat each ball.
Heat oil in large saucepan on medium-high to 375°F. Carefully add yuca balls, a few at a time; cook 2 min. or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Serve warm.
Serve with a tropical fruit salad.
This traditional Panamanian dish is typically eaten as part of the midday meal. For spicier flavor, mix 1 tsp. chili powder with the cracker crumbs before using as directed.
Calories From Fat
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 17g
Saturated Fat 5g
Trans Fat 0g
Total Carbohydrates 52g
Dietary Fibers 3g
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
Makes 20 fritters or 10 servings, 2 fritters each.
* Nutrition information is estimated based on the ingredients and cooking instructions as described in each recipe and is intended to be used for informational purposes only. Please note that nutrition details may vary based on methods of preparation, origin and freshness of ingredients used.