Recipes and Tips for Healthier Living and Smarter Budgeting

Monday, November 22, 2010

Best Thanksgiving Yams

I have made this recipe for a couple different Thanksgiving gatherings and people have enjoyed it. As you know, there are tons of yam or sweet potato recipes for Thanksgiving, but if you're looking for something a little different, try this one. It doesn't try to disguise the tasty vegetable and fruit with tons of refined sugar and marshmallows. Instead, it enhances their natural flavors in a way that somehow still reminds me of pie. With so many other sugar-filled items served at the celebration, why not make a healthy, yummy yam dish? (By the way, I got the recipe from my aunt Kristen, an excellent and creative cook.)

Followup note: I made it for Thanksgiving 2010 for a family gathering full of people who don't like yams but eat the token spoonful each Thanksgiving. None of them seemed at all excited about my offer to make a yam dish, but they let me do it--and I got tons of compliments and several even asked for the recipe! I felt like that was mission accomplished because I love helping others rediscover undervalued/unappreciated healthful foods.

Best Thanksgiving Yams

Wash, scrub about 4 large yams. Place in pot with enough water to cover and boil until cooked all the way through but not mushy (check with a fork). Drain off water, allow yams to cool. Then carefully peel (you want them to look as nice as possible when you're done).

Slice yams into a 9 x 12 casserole dish. Slices should be about 1/4"-1/2" thick.

Peel and slice 2-3 apples over top of yams and arrange neatly. (I like to use Jonathan or another variety that has some tartness to it.)

Pour thickened juice mixture over that:

Juice mixture

2 c. apple juice concentrate (Other years I have used apple raspberry juice concentrate or apple cran-raspberry, which were also superb)
4 Tb. cornstarch - mix into juice before heating, then heat to boiling and stir till thickened and clear.

Add the following to juice mixture (all these delectable spices say "holidays" to me!):
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. cloves
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/4 tsp. ginger

Serve dish warm (so you may need to keep in a warm oven until time to serve).

Just before serving, sprinkle cashews over top.


Carolyn said...

This article says that most vegetables called Yams in the United States are actually sweet potatoes. So does this recipe use actual Yams or just sweet potatoes that are called yams?

Katrina said...

That's a good question, Carolyn. I've heard something similar. The yams I grew up with, buy when they're on sale, and eat every Thanksgiving are very orange inside, unlike what we have always referred to as sweet potatoes, that are more yellow in color. So it's the orange variety used in this recipe.

Brandi M said...

I am SO GLAD I have you here to share my mom's recipes with me! Now I have a yummy, traditional dish that I grew up on and can make this weekend. Thanks!

(Someday I should steal my mom's recipe folder and photo copy them all!)

Katrina said...

Oh, good! I'm glad I can be of service, Brandi. And really, I wish I had more of your mom's recipes.

My mom and I were just talking the other day about these yams, which we have only eaten the last few years. Before that we always ate a variety my mom made with pineapple that we thought was good. But last year my mom tried that old recipe again, and she says she didn't like it nearly as well, so she's not going back. Kristen's recipe has definitely made its mark in at least my family!


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