African Yam (fried puna Yam) – delicious crispy coated fries made from African yam. This is a simple dish, but it results in fantastic eating.
African Yam (fried puna Yam)
This recipe is a twist on the traditional fried yams I grew up with. Then, my mom thought us to sprinkle a bit of salt on the already peeled yam and then deep fry it. This yielded a crispy exterior and a soft interior.
My dad also thought us how to add some water inside the oil while frying the yams and this yielded a much delicate texture and taste. However, I’ll advise anyone not to try this except you see the process on how it’s being made because it can be difficult dealing with hot oil.
In the recent past a fast-food chain came up with this brilliant idea of coating the Yams with a batter made with spicy egg and flour mixture and they called it ”Yamarita” Such a cool name. I have to say that the outcome is amazing!
What is African Yam
African yam is totally different from what we refer to as yams here in the states (the orange-fleshed Sweet potatoes). Though they are both root crops but they are two different species and they have very different backgrounds and uses.
The African yam is native to Africa and some parts of Asia. It is also referred to as puna yam or true yam. They have dark brown rough skin with off-white flesh and they come in different varieties.
Yams are starchy tubers (starchier and drier than sweet potatoes). They have an almost black bark-like skin with white to off-white flesh and come in many varieties. They can be as small as regular potatoes and they can grow to about five feet long.
How to cook the African Yam
Where to buy African Yams
If you live outside Africa like the united states, the best place to find African yams will be the ethnic market or online stores.
This is an excellent recipe to try if you are looking for something different from the traditional fried yams. It is best enjoyed when dipped in the African all-purpose sauce and can be served alongside grilled chicken, steak, or grilled fish.
Other African Yam recipes you might want to try:
African Yam - Fried Puna Yam
- 1 pound Puna Yam
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 Egg large
- 1 tsp cayenne or to taste
- Salt to taste
- 1/4 Garlic powder
- 1/4 Curry powder
- 1/4 Black Pepper
- 1/4 Thyme
- 1/4 Salt
- 1/2 tsp bouillon powder optional
- Peel the yam and cut into rectangles about one inch wide and half-inch thick. Rinse and drain
- Put the yams inside a pot, add water about the level of the Yam. Season with salt also and let it cook for about 7 minutes.
- Drain the excess water and transfer the yams to a bowl of cold water to stop the cooking process. Drain again and set aside.
- Crack the eggs in a bowl, add the Cayenne Pepper (optional) and salt to taste. Whisk together set that aside.
- In a separate bowl, combine the Flour, Garlic powder, Curry powder, Thyme, Black Pepper and bouillon and mix together.
- Dip the yam (one at a time) in the egg and Flour mixture respectively making sure the yam is well coated.
- Preheat the oil over a medium to high heat and place the coated yams inside fry the Yam turning halfway between until golden brown.
- Serve with your favorite sauce or eat as is. ENJOY!
If you make this African fried Yam, I’d love to see pictures of your creations on Instagram or Facebook. #cheflolaskitchen