Health Benefits of Yam

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Yam Quick Facts
Name: Yam
Scientific Name: Dioscorea alata
Origin It was originated in tropical regions of Asia or Africa. Yam is native to Southeast Asia (Indochina, Indonesia, Philippines) and surrounding areas (Taiwan, Assam, Ryukyu Islands, Nepal, Christmas Island, New Guinea).
Colors Dark brown to light pink
Flesh colors Starchy, white
Calories 158 Kcal./cup
Major nutrients Carbohydrate (28.75%)
Vitamin B6 (23.85%)
Copper (23.00%)
Manganese (21.96%)
Potassium (19.38%)
Health benefits Prevent skin problems, Heart problems, Female health, Antioxidant source, Digestive health
Yams are members of the Dioscoreae family. Dependent on the yam variety, of which there are approximately 200, its flesh might be of different colors which includes white, ivory, yellow or purple while its thick skin either can be white, pink or even brownish-black. Their shape is long as well as round (frequently having offshoots known as “toes”) whilst their exterior texture is rough as well as scaly. Yams have got a starchy as well as slippery texture so when cooked, will be either creamy or even firm, based upon the variety. Their taste is earthy and also hardy, with many varieties having minimal, if any, sweetness. Particular kinds of yams consist of Dioscorea alata (Hawaiian yam), Dioscorea batatas (korean yam) as well as Dioscorea esculenta (sweet yam).

Yams are basically flowering plants which are generally mistaken for sweet potatoes even though yams originate from plants which have just one embryonic seed leaf (referred to as a monocot) and therefore are classified in the yam family, under the Dioscorea genus. Sweet potatoes on the other hand originate from plants which possess two embryonic seed leaves (referred to as a dicot). Further, they fall under a new family classification – the morning glory or Convolvulacea family. In terms of similarity, instead of sweet potatoes, yams are found to be associated with grasses in addition to lilies.

In appearance they frequently look like elongated potatoes however the size and appearance of yams might differ significantly with the different types, such as purple yams and white yams. The smaller ones might be compared in size to a small potato whilst the larger ones can grow to weigh over 100 pounds. Their origins could be traced to the continents of Africa and Asia but they’re widely accessible in many parts of the world today, particularly as more people come to comprehend the health advantages of yams.

Yam is available in around 200 distinct varieties along with colors which range from ivory, yellow to purple. The shape of the tuber is long and cylindrical with a rough exterior. The commercially essential varieties of yam usually are White Yam, Yellow Yam, Chinese Yam, South East Asian and trifoliate yam. Yam in other languages is known as as ‘Suran‘ or ‘Jimikand‘ in Hindi, ‘Kandagadda‘ in Telugu, ‘Senai Kizhangu‘ in Tamil, ‘Chena‘ in Malayalam and ‘Surangadde‘ in Kannada.

The plant that bears yam is really a perennial vine that grows up to 2 meters long. Yams are very much like sweet potatoes but they’re no way connected it. The major variations between the two tubers are: yams are larger in size; they’ve thicker, brown to pink skin, with respect to the cultivar type, whilst sweet potatoes are comparatively smaller in size and also have a very thin peel.

Yam is grown all through Africa, Nigeria being the largest producer as well as exporter of Yam. Nigeria offers around 70% of the world’s total Yam production.


Yams are not inherent to North America but originated in tropical regions of Africa or Asia. Due to extensive cultivation and transport of yams the exact origins of some species are unknown. Chinese yam is inherent to Eastern Asia. Fiveleaf yam is inherent to Eastern Polynesia or tropical Asia. Zanzibar yam is inherent to Africa. Water yam has been noted to be inherent to Southeast Asia but Coursey indicated that water yam is not known in wild state anywhere in the world but was cultivated firstly in Burma or Assam. It was transported to Eastern coast of Africa 2000 years before. Air yam is known from Africa and Asia and is inherent to both continents.


The tubers of yam is conical or globose, cylindric or oblate. The plant bears twining to right stems which are ridged, glabrous having four narrow and membranous wings prickly at base. Leaves are alternate, simple having purplish red or green petioles of 4 to 15 cm. Leaf blades are ovate, glabrous, purplish red or green measuring 6 to 15(to 20) × 4 to 13 cm having deeply cordate to sagittate base and caudate or shortly acuminate apex. Male spikes are solitary, form a panicle and are about 1.5 to 4 cm. Flowers usually male are broadly ovate measuring 1.5 to 2 mm. Female spikes are solitary. Female flowers have six staminodes. Capsules are oblate, not reflexed measuring 1.5 to 2.5 cm having 1.2 to 2.2 cm wide wings.

Health Benefits of Yam

Health benefits of yams are recognized to many individuals who’ve taken advantage of yams in managing blood pressure level among other benefits. Yams are usually in the family of tubers. It grows underground as well as harvested the same way as cassava. Though not popular in the west, this food crop is well-known in rural area in Africa where it is grown mainly in dry areas because of its hardy nature as well as drought resistant characteristics. Yams may either be boiled or even cut and fried with some vegetables or even baked on dry heat prior to being eaten in breakfast.

Being a starchy vegetable, it is made up of dietary fiber and complex carbohydrates which allows slow uptake to normalize the level of blood sugar. Vitamin A helps to maintain healthy mucous membranes, skin, support healthy bones, increase night vision and protect mouth and lung cancers. It is a great source of Vitamin C which provides 27% of daily value to counteract infections such as flu and colds and speeds up healing process, immune function and strong bones. It provides healthy amounts of potassium, fiber, metabolic B vitamins and manganese. Yams also contain riboflavin, thiamin, pantothenic acid, folic acid and niacin. Yams are used in Japanese, Korean and Chinese medicine as it contains allantoin which speeds up healing process when applied as poultice to abscesses and boils.

Listed below are a few well-known health benefits of consuming Yam:-

  1. Prevent skin problems

Since centuries, yam is used in traditional medicine of Korea, China and Japan. It possess allantoin which is a cell proliferate speeding up healing process when topically applied to boils, ulcers and other skin diseases. The decoction helps assist in stimulation and provides relief from cough, bronchial irritation and other respiratory problems. Yam slows down the appearance of signs of aging and makes the skin vibrant and younger. Being loaded with Vitamin C, other nutrients and beta carotene it provides antioxidant properties. These nutrients eliminate harmful free radicals and prevent skin cell damage. It results in dark spots, fine lines and wrinkle free skin. Vitamin C regenerates damaged skin, collagen production and makes the skin smooth and elastic. Place yam slices or grated yam over eyes to remove dark circles in eyes. Prepare a face mask by boiling yam, mash it and mix it with honey. Apply this paste to the face and let it remain for about half an hour and then wash it. This mask assist in skin rejuvenation and cleanses the skin by exfoliating it.

  1. Heart problems

Being a great source of Vitamin B6, it is essential for the body break down homocysteine that could damage blood vessels walls. High presence of homocysteine results in heart attack. Vitamin B6 helps to lower the chances of development of heart diseases. Potassium is a vital component of body fluids and controlling blood pressure and heart rate with counteracting hypertensive effects of sodium. Yam has dioscorin which is helpful for hypertension patients. Dioscorin results in promotion of flow of kidney and lower blood pressure.

  1. Female health

Yam is helpful for menopausal women. It consists of enzyme which provides natural alternative to replacement of hormones in women reaching menopause. Menopause symptoms such as nausea and hot flashes causes imbalance of hormones and could be treated with hormone replacement therapy. Yams possess diosgenins that affect hormonal patterns by lowering the symptoms of menopause. It is the chemical which is used in steroid production such as progesterone and estrogen. Traditionally roots have been used in combination with lactation. Vitamin B6 is a vital supplement for women with Premenstrual Syndrome especially depression that is provoke by it. It acts as a tonic for female system that assists to balance hormones. It heals body conditions from holistic standpoint.

  1. Antioxidant source

Yams possess fiber and complex carbohydrates which slows rate at which sugars are released and absorbed in mainstream. High content of fiber keeps one full without addition of extra kilos. Yams are rich in manganese which is a mineral that supports carbohydrates metabolism and is vital for production of energy and antioxidant defenses. Yams are an excellent source of Vitamin C and antioxidants that eliminates free radicals which could damage DNA and causes heart diseases and cancer. Vitamin C promotes collagen production that promotes elasticity of skin and makes it supple and smooth. It assist to maintain youthful appearance with the prevention of occurrence of signs of aging such as fine lines, wrinkles and dark spots.

  1. Digestive health

Though indigestion is not life threatening, it makes us feel miserable. Its symptoms include excessive gas, bloating and nausea. Indigestion during pregnancy needs to fix up diet with an introduction of more healthy starches such as yams. Due to high content of dietary fiber, it prevents constipation. Fiber adds bulk to the stool and assures regular and smooth bowel movements. This healthful food prevents digestive disorders such as indigestion, constipation and irritable bowel syndrome.

  1. Cancer prevention

Increase in intake of yams as it is rich in vitamin C that prevents body from harmful free radicals that are the cause for cancers by promoting oxidative stress. Cancers are associated with oxidative stress including mouth cancer, throat cancer, colon cancer, stomach cancer and lung cancer.

  1. Eye health

The tasks such as studying, writing, watching movies and television is harder without eyes. Yams are beneficial for maintaining eye health. Yams are a great source of Vitamin C that helps to strengthen immune system and lower the chances of macular degeneration which is harmful to vision and causes permanent blindness. Vitamin A supports eye health and lower the chances of risk infections. Moreover, yams have high content of Vitamin C and antioxidants that has vital role in elimination of free radicals and prevents eye diseases.

  1. Brain health

Besides bananas, yams are also a great source of potassium which is a mineral for regulation of nerve activity of brain. Potassium affects the nerves activity. High content of potassium enhance cognitive functions of the brain.

  1. Metabolic activity

Yams have high content of Vitamin B which promotes nervous health and supports metabolic activity. Studies show that yams are able to promote learning capacity and memory in humans. Yams contain folate which helps to lower cognitive decline and reduce the chances of Alzheimer’s disease. Potassium enhances flow of blood and promotes cognitive abilities, concentration and neural activity. Yams have antioxidant enzymes which enhance cognitive response. Antioxidants counteract free radicals and protect cells of brain from being damage. Yams contain vitamins which resolve metabolic functions in the body. Carotene is vital for converting Vitamin A in the body. Vitamin A assists in maintaining healthy skin and mucous membranes. Yams support vision. Vitamin C found in yam has a vital role in improving immunity, anti-aging, bone growth and wound healing.

  1. Helpful during pregnancy

The consumption of yam is found to be helpful during pregnancy. It contains Vitamin B6 which relieves nausea, morning sickness and vomiting. It prevents the chances of low birth weight in new born babies. High content of antioxidants prevents oxidative stress and prevents diseases. It is a great source of potassium which helps to maintain level of blood pressure. Pregnant ladies suffer mainly from constipation. So high content of fiber in yam prevents chances of constipation and other digestive problems. High amount of folate prevents neural tube defects n fetus. Iron promotes the count of red blood cells and prevent anemia.

11.  Prevents Premature Hair Greying

Yam may also avoid premature greying since it includes a great deal of Vitamin B6 that creates melanin and provides the hair its colour.

12. Promotes Blood Circulation in the Scalp

Iron in yam helps the red blood cells to transport oxygen and promote the circulation of blood within the scalp. Lower levels of iron within the body can result in hair loss as well as baldness both in men and women. Therefore, regular usage of yam may prevent hair loss and definately will encourage hair growth.

13. Protection Against Cardiovascular Disease

Yams are a fantastic source of vitamin B6. Vitamin B6 is required by the entire body to break down a substance known as homocysteine, which could directly damage blood vessel walls. Those who suffer a heart attack in spite of normal or even low cholesterol levels are sometimes found to have high amounts of homocysteine. Since higher homocysteine levels are signficantly related to increased chance of heart attack and stroke, having a good supply of vitamin B6 on hand will make a great deal of sense. Higher consumption of vitamin B6 seemed to be proven to prevent heart disease.

14. Weight Control

Rich in fiber, yams fill you up nicely without filling out your hips as well as waistline. Yams’ complex carbohydrates are broken down into sugars, released as well as absorbed into the bloodstream in a gradual rate, keeping you satisfied for a longer period, and they’re really low in calories too.

Types of Yam

Yam can be found in a number of different species as well as varieties throughout the world. The color of the vegetable varies from yellow to purple and also ivory. Yam is long as well as cylindrical and has a rough exterior. Owing to its much wide consumption all over the world, this particular vegetable is commercially essential and it is a chief material of trade in many nations. The commercially essential types are Trifoliate Yam, Chinese Yam, White Yam, Yellow Yam and South East Asian Yam. Aside from being essential in many rituals, yam also offers numerous health advantages together with numerous significant effects on the hair and skin.

Cultivated yam species

1. Dioscorea rotundata and D. cayenensis

Dioscorea rotundata





Dioscorea rotunda, the white yam, and D. cayenensis, the yellow yam, are indigenous to Africa. These are the most significant grown yams. In the past, these were regarded as two species but many taxonomists now regard them as the same species. There are actually over 200 grown types between them. They’re big plants; the vines could be as long as 10 to 12 meters (35 to 40 feet). The tubers quite often weigh about 2.5 to 5 kg (6 to 12 lbs) each, but could weigh just as much as 25 kg (60 lbs). After 7 to 12 months growth the tubers are harvested. In Africa, the majority are pounded in a paste to help make the traditional dish “fufu” (Kay 1987).

2. D. alata

 D. alata





Dioscorea alata, known as water yam, winged yam, as well as purple yam, was initially grown somewhere in Southeast Asia. Although not grown within the same quantities since the African yams, it has the biggest distribution throughout the world of any grown yam, being grown in Asia, the Pacific islands, Africa, and also the West Indies (Mignouna 2003). In the United States, it has become an unpleasant varieties in certain southern states.

In the Philippines, it’s called ube (or ubi) and is also utilized as a component in several sweet desserts. In India, it’s called ratalu or even violet yam or the Moraga Surprise. In Hawaii, it’s called uhi. Uhi was brought to Hawaii by the early Polynesian settlers and became a significant crop in the 1800s once the tubers were sold to visiting ships just as one easily stored food supply for their voyages (White 2003).

3. D. opposita

D. opposita





Dioscorea opposite, Chinese yam, is indigenous to China. It really is resistant to frost and could be grown in colder situations compared to other yams. It’s now cultivated in China, Korea, and Japan. It absolutely was introduced to Europe within the 1800s once the potato crop there was falling victim to disease. It’s still grown in France for the Asian food market.

The Chinese yam plant is almost small compared to the African yam, together with the vines about 3 meters (10 feet) long. The tubers are harvested after about Six months of growth. Many are eaten right after harvesting and some are utilized as ingredients for other dishes, including noodles, as well as for traditional medicines (Kay 1987).

4. D. bulbifera

D. bulbifera





Dioscorea bulbifera, the air potato, can be found in both Africa and Asia along with moderate differences in between those found in the two places. It is just a large vine, 6 meters (20 feet) or more long. It creates tubers; however the bulbils which grow in the base of its ]]leaf|leaves]] are the more essential food product. They are about the size of potatoes (and so the name air potato), weighing from 0.5 to 2 kg (1 to 5 lbs).

Some varieties could be consumed raw even though some need soaking or even boiling for detoxification before eating. It’s not grown much commercially because the flavor of other yams is liked by most people. However it’s popular in home vegetable gardens since it creates a crop only for 4 months of growth as well as continues for the life of the vine, so long as two years. Also the bulbils are simple to harvest and cook (Kay 1987).

In 1905, the air potato was introduced to Florida in the United States and it has since become an unpleasant varieties in much of the state. Its rapid development crowds out native vegetation, and it’s also tough to remove because it can grow back through the tubers and new vines can grow from the bulbils even after being cut down or even burned (Schultz 1993).

5. D. esculenta

D. esculenta





Dioscorea esculenta, the lesser yam, was among the first yam species grown. It is indigenous to Southeast Asia and is also the third-most commonly grown species there, even though it is grown hardly any in other parts of the world. Its vines seldom reach over 3 meters (10 feet) in length and also the tubers are fairly small in many varieties. The tubers are consumed baked, boiled, or even fried similar to potatoes. Due to the small size of the tubers, mechanical cultivation can be done; which, along with its easy preparation and good flavor, may help the lesser yam become more popular in the future (Kay 1987).

6. D. trifida

Dioscorea trifida, the cush-cush yam, is indigenous to the Guyana region of South America and is also the most crucial cultivated New World yam. Since they originated from exotic rainforest conditions, their growth cycle is less associated with seasonal changes than other yams. Due to their relative ease of cultivation as well as their good flavor they’re thought to have got a great possibility of elevated production (Kay 1987).

7. D.dumetorum

Dioscorea dumetorum, the bitter yam, is common as a vegetable in parts of West Africa; one reason being that their cultivation requires less labor than other yams. The wild forms are certainly toxic and therefore are sometimes utilized to poison animals whenever combined with bait. It is stated that they have already been utilized for criminal purposes (Kay 1987).

Selection and Storage

Yams can be found all year long around but they are mostly harvested within the month of August. Nigeria and Ghana celebrate a brand new yam festival each year along with great pomp.

The flesh is white-colored to light pink in colour and a few are even obtainable in yellow colour. Select yams which are firm and don’t have got cracks, bruises or even spots.  Do not purchase refrigerated yams as cold temperatures may change their taste. Yam ought to be kept after drying several hours within the sunlight in the barn. In this way, they may be kept for many hours without refrigeration. Yams need to preferably be kept in a cool, dark as well as well aired location. You are able to cut it in sections and store within the refrigerator. However it is best if eaten in the earliest.

Yam, however, can’t be consumed raw and really should be cooked effectively just before eating since it includes many naturally sourced plant toxins. Yam {ought to be|needs to be} peeled as well as cooked to eliminate the bitter proteins.  Japanese yam could be consumed raw in salads or even grated unlike the African yam. It features a rich starchy flavor. You may also soak yam in vinegar water solution to neutralize oxalate crystals within the skin. Yams taste creamy and turn very firm whenever cooked. Cooked yam posseses an earthy taste along with small sweetness.

Yam may be used in a number of cuisines, possibly boiled, baked, fried and also roasted. It may also be utilized in the preparation of cakes, muffin as well as bread.  You may also puree cooked yam or can add chunks of yam in your roasted vegetables or meat.  You may also utilize yam like a supplement in capsule form. It really works effectively specifically for women’s health since it helps you to support the female system.

Researchers have figured that roasted yam is the perfect option compared to boiled yams as yams, when boiled can result in some nutritional loss. Wet heat cooking or even steaming is the ideal mode of cooking yam, since this eliminates submerging the food in water and risking extreme leeching of water soluble nutrients.

Traditional uses

  • Tubers and leaves are used for treating various health ailments.
  • Use the leaves as a poultice for tumors and pimples and in bath water for soothing stings and skin irritations.
  • Air yam is helpful in treating swellings, sores, sore throats, hemorrhoids and diabetes.
  • Air yam is used for treating tumors and leprosy in Northern Bangladesh.
  • Use Chinese yams to cure diarrhea, poor appetite, coughs, asthma, diabetes, frequent urination and emotional instability.
  • Tubers of Chinese yam possess allantoin that speeds up the healing process.
  • In folk medicine, it is used to treat tumors, leprosy, gonorrhea, fever and inflamed hemorrhoids.


  • Use it under the supervision of health practitioner for treating health ailments.
  • Not to be used by allergic people.
  • People with health problems should consult doctor for use.

How to Eat         

  • Use purple yam in desserts or to promote the flavor of milk, ice cream, tarts, cakes, cookies, Swiss rolls and pastries.
  • It is consumed boiled or sweetened jam in Philippines.
  • Use it as an ingredient in an iced dessert.
  • During religious fasting in Maharashtra, it is used to make stir fried chips.
  • Purple yam is also an essential ingredient in Undhiyu.
  • Yam is also a popular desert in Jaffna, Sri Lanka.
  • In Nepal, it is consumed during Magh Sankranti.
  • Tuber is baked, boiled, roasted and fried.
  • In a cooked yam, puree little milk and season it with coriander, tamari, cayenne and cumin.
  • Chunks of yams could be added to roasted vegetables.
  • Mushrooms, onions, fennel and roasted yams make a great combination.
  • In Indonesia, desserts are made with mashed purple yam, sugar and coconut.
  • Yams are made into sweet dish in Philippines.

Healthy & Delicious Recipe with Yam

1. Yam stir fry

Yam stir fry






  • 300 gms yam, cut into small cubes & boiled
  • 2 tbsp. oil
  • 1 tsp. mustard seeds
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 1 tsp. urad dal (split black gram)
  • 1 green chily, chopped
  • pinch of asafoetida
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1/2 – 1 tsp. red chili powder
  • 1 tsp. sambar powder
  • lime juice to taste
  • coriander leaves to garnish


  1. Heat oil in a non-stick pan and temper with the mustard seeds.
  2. After it stops crackling, add the urad dal, asafoetida, green chily and curry leaves.
  3. Saute for a few seconds till the dal changes colour.
  4. Add the boiled yam cubes, salt, turmeric powder, red chili powder and sambar powder.
  5. Saute on low flame for 1-2 minutes.
  6. Switch off the flame and add the lime juice.
  7. Mix well and serve, garnished with coriander leaves.

2. Avial (Mixed vegetables with ground coconut)

Avial (Mixed vegetables with ground coconut)






  • Brinjal- 1
  • Yam(Chena) – 250 gms
  • Drumsticks -2
  • Long beans(Achinga) -100 gms
  • Snake Gourd(Padavalanga) -250 gms
  • Wintermelon(Kumbalanga) -150 gms
  • Cucumber(Vellarikka) – 500 gms
  • Coconut Sunflower oil – 1 tablespoon (I used refined oil)
  • Salt to taste
  • Turmeric powder -1/2 teaspoon
  • Chilli powder -1 teaspoon
  • Grated Coconut (of 1 coconut)
  • Raw mango -100 gms (I used sour Curd)
  • Green chillies – 50 gms
  • Cumin seeds -1 teaspoon
  • Coconut oil – 1 tablespoon
  • Curry leaves -2 sprigs


  1. Slice all of the vegetables to 1″ length pieces.
  2. Keep the raw mango(if using)pieces aside.
  3. Cook all of the vegatbles besides Mango along with 1 tablespoon oil, salt, turmeric powder and chilli powder on low heat till all vegetables are cooked.
  4. You do not have to add water since most of the vegetable release the water.
  5. (If you utilize other vegetables that has less water content, you can include water).
  6. If using mangoes or even curd, add it now and let cook till it is done.
  7. Coarsely grind the coconut together with chillies and cumin seeds.It is recommended to grind cumin seeds individually since it must be finely ground.
  8. Mix the coconut mixture together with cumin paste in the vegetables and toss.Try not to make use of a ladle or spoon so that the vegetables don’t turn slushy.
  9. Finally add the coconut oil and curry leaves and toss well to ensure they are well blended.
  10. Serve along with Rice.

3. Gluten Free Yam Pancakes

Gluten Free Yam Pancakes






  • 1 medium yam, peeled
  • 1 or more eggs
  • 1 teaspoon red onion, chopped
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • virgin coconut oil
  • salt


  1. Use the coarse section of a grater to grate the yam in a bowl. Take a small handful as well as squeeze hard to eliminate any excessive juice. Return the grated yam to the bowl.
  2. Add 1 whole egg and mix to blend. If the mixture looks a little dry, add one more egg yolk. It should look a little creamy, like cole slaw, but it should not be dripping with egg liquid. Add onion and pepper.
  3. Heat a sizable skillet and also add sufficient coconut oil to cover the bottom. As soon as oil is hot although not smoking, drop a forkful of yam mixture into the skillet and flatten with a fork.
  4. Fry till brown and crispy; flip and fry on other side. Regulate heat so that oil doesn’t smoke and add more oil if necessary.
  5. Repeat until all of the yam mixture is utilized. It’s ok if the pancakes are touching in the skillet.
  6. Drain on paper towels if desired. Salt to taste.

4. Thanksgiving Yummy Yams

Thanksgiving Yummy Yams






  • 4 yams
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • sprinkle of kosher salt
  • 4 T. butter
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • sprinkle of cinnamon
  • 1 1/2-2 cups sharp or mild shredded cheddar cheese


  1. Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish.
  2. Peel and cut yams into finger-sized pieces. This is hard so you may would like to microwave the yams for 2 minutes to soften.
  3. Spread yams evenly in dish, sprinkle with sugar, cinnamon, and salt, pour cream over top, and dot with butter.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees covered with foil for 60 , minutes or until yams are fork tender.
  5. Uncover and top with cheese, bake 5 minutes longer or even till cheese is melted. Serves 8-10.

5. Yam Duck Recipe

Yam Duck Recipe






  • 4 1/3 lbs duck, cleaned and cut into 8 pieces
  • 3 1/4 lbs yam, cut into large wedges
  • 3 1/5 oz young ginger, sliced
  • 1 tbsp chopped garlic
  • ¼ cup oil
  • 1 pc fermented beancurd
  • 2 tbsp soy bean sauce
  • 1 ¾ cups water
  • 2 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • 1 pc cinnamon stick, about 5cm long
  • 2 star anise
  • 2 cloves


  1. Heat the oil in the hot wok. Fry ginger as well as garlic till its soft.
  2. Add the fermented beancurd and also soy bean sauce and fry till aromatic.
  3. Add the duck and keep on stir-frying till well coated with spices.
  4. Pour in 400ml of water and let to cook on low heat till meat is fairly tender. Include the yam and simmer till it is soft.
  5. Add in seasonings. Stir and dish up.
  6. Garnish with scallions and Chinese celery. Serve hot

6. Yummy Yam Curry 

Yummy Yam Curry






  • 1/4 Kg- Yam( Any kind, preferably Elephant Yam cut in Sugar cube size)
  • 5 tsp- Coconut, (unsweetened) ground to a paste
  • 1 tsp- Ginger, ground to a paste
  • 3 or 4- Green chilli
  • 2 or 3 pinches- Turmeric
  • Curry leaves -a few
  • 1 tsp- Coconut oil
  • Salt To taste


  1. Put the yam pieces, turmeric and green chilli in 3 mugs of water and then leave it to boil on high fire for approximately 15-20 minutes.
  2. Add the coconut and garlic paste and salt. Mix well and lower the fire.
  3. Leave for 10 minutes.
  4. Mash up a couple of yam pieces with a spoon to help make the gravy thicker.
  5. On another pan, heat one tspfuls of oil and make the curry leaves splutter in it.
  6. Transfer this on the main dish.
  7. Serve hot with rice or roti.

7. Yam Balls

 Yam Balls






  • 6 cubes of yam/sweet potato (you may also use yam/potato flour).
  • 30 grams or 11/2 handful of ground/minced meat (any type of meat may be used).
  • I medium sized carrot and/or other vegetables (chopped).
  • 1 small sized onion.
  • Half teaspoon of garlic powder (optional).
  • Half teaspoon of parsley (optional).
  • 1 teaspoon of thyme.
  • 1 teaspoon of curry powder.
  • 1 pinch of ground chili pepper (ata gigun).
  • 1 seasoning cube (maggi).
  • 1 tablespoon of salt.
  • 50 grams of flour.
  • 1 large egg (whisked).
  • 50 grams of bread crumbs.


  1. Wash, peel and cut the yams into small cubes. Rinse and place within a pot, pour enough water to cover the yams, add some salt and boil until tender.
  2. Strain off the water and mash the boiled yams till smooth (if using yam or potato flour, heat up some hot water as well as pour within the flour and stir up until you obtain a stiff yet soft dough(much like pounded yam).
  3. Season the meat with thyme, curry powder, seasoning cube, salt, garlic, parsley…
  4. Heat the oil, add the chopped onion and fry it for a bit.
  5. Add the minced meat to the oil.
  6. Add the chopped carrot and/or other veggies (you can include some seasoning).
  7. Stir-fry for one minute and then leave to cool.
  8. Form small bits of ball together with the mashed yams and leave a hole in the centre.
  9. Flatten the balls and add some seasoned fillings in it and roll into a ball (don’t overfill to prevent them bursting open when you fry).
  10. Now put the flour, whisked eggs and breadcrumbs in three (3) separate plates and gently coat each one of the molded balls, first with the flour, followed by the whisked egg and finally, the breadcrumbs.
  11. You can fry immediately or you can refrigerate the molded balls within the freezer for thirty minutes to one hour so they can come out well when you fry it.
  12. Deep fry the balls till they will become golden brown.







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