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How to Cook Yams?


Yams are often confused with sweet potatoes because they can be interchanged in most recipes. However, do not think that they are they are the same vegetable. Yams are native to South and Central America, Asia and Africa.

There are different varieties of yams. They can be pink, purple, yellow or off-white in color. They have natural sugar and more moisture, compared to sweet potatoes. Then again, as mentioned above, sweet potatoes and yams can be interchanged in most recipes such as the ones  given below. To learn how to cook yams, you can use the following simple recipes.

Trivia! – Estrogens (sex hormones) were first made from a similar compound in yams. Yams were used commercially to produce hormones for contraceptive pills and steroids.

Pan-cooked Yams

If you want to learn how to cook yams, one of the most popular ways to do it is to pan fry them. This recipe is called pan-cooked yams. In this case, you can replace yams with sweet potatoes also. So, for a variation, you could use the same recipe and create a different dish by replacing yams with the sweet potatoes.

Ingredients Required to Make Pan-cooked Yams

The following includes the list of ingredients required to make this simple yet tasty dish.

  • 4 yams, medium size (you may use sweet potatoes)
  • 1 tsp olive oil or butter
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tbsp sugar, regular or brown will do
  • nutmeg (a pinch)
  • cinnamon (a pinch)
  • all spice mixture (a pinch)
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions to Make Pan-cooked Yams

This dish is pretty easy to prepare.

  • The first step in the process is to peel your yams and wash or rinse them thoroughly. Next, slice each yam into two halves.
  • Mix the rest of the ingredients in a bowl.
  • Now, layer the top of the yam with the mixture. Place the yams in a pan and cover and simmer on medium heat.
  • Cook for about 15 to 20 minutes until tender.

This recipe yields four mouthwatering servings.

African Yams

African Yams is another recipe that you can try if you want to learn how to cook yams. Yams are also common in Africa and can even be described as a staple dish for a lot of African families. So, Let us start cooking yams, the African way!

Ingredients Required to Make African Yams

African yams is an extremely simple and basic dish and the ingredients required include:

  • yams
  • butter
  • water
  • sugar
  • salt

Instructions to Make African Yams

The following simple steps will yield this rich and wonderful dish for you.

  • Peel the raw yams and put them in a pot.
  • Cover with water and add salt.
  • Boil the yams until they become tender.
  • Once done, drain the yams.
  • Mash the yams and then, add sugar according to taste. Also add butter and a pinch of salt. And you are done!
  • You may also opt not to peel your yams and not to mash them. Simply cut it in half, once it is tender after boiling. Then serve with sugar, butter, salt, pepper or cinnamon to taste.

This recipe is similar to mashed potatoes, except for a slight difference in the ingredients you add.

Do you know of any Yam related recipe? Please let us know below.

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