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Yams And Sweet Potatoes - Sweet Memories Of Childhood

Updated on November 4, 2017

Remember Yams?

Remember yams from childhood? They were served in a bowl, orange and steamy. Remember those special evenings when the potatoes had color? Truly, yams marked a special occasion.

Of course, I speak of my own experience. We served yams boiled or baked, a substitute for the baked or boiled potato, something that made a meal memorable and special. Ah, the memories of childhood!

Now I realize how little I knew about what I was eating. Brace yourself! Yams and sweet potatoes are not the same thing! Yam is more than a slangy, affectionate name to call what is formally known as a sweet potato.

Yams and sweet potatoes are entirely different, unrelated vegetables. Sweet potatoes originated in in south and central America. The yam comes from Africa. The term "yam" probably comes from west African language, and was affected by the speaking of Portugese explorers. It was the slaves that traveled from Africa to North America that first referred to sweet potatoes as yams.

The sweet potato usually has a thin, light yellow or orange skin. The yam is darker, with a dark brown to light pink skin.

The yam has a rough skin, which is difficult to peel, while the sweet potato is a bit friendlier in this respect, with a thinner, more easy to peel skin.

Okay, I'll admit it; The potato, the yam, and the sweet potato aren't always the plain. basic dishes I experienced as a child. In fact, they are often found in quite exotic dishes. Okay, I will skip over the potato. This article is focused on the sweet potato and the yam.

...Which are, separately, and independently identified (unlike my childhood experience), often the inspiration of exotic recipes.

Today, yams are often eaten as a sweetened desert. They are a popular ingredient for ice cream. There are also yam brownies and yam smoothies.

...While sweet potatoes are still experienced most often as a staple food, baked, roasted, or fried. Of course there is sweet potato pie...

Yams and sweet potatoes: they're there for your enjoyment. Just remember: they're not really the same thing!.



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    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 4 months ago from Home Sweet Home

      when I was young, we were so poor that we had sweet potatoes for morning, lunch and dinner