Smoky Yam Fries

These aren’t just your basic yammy yam fries; they’re smoky yam fries. They accompany almost any dish with a sharp, tangy flavour that would make you see the humble yam in a whole new way.

I never did care for yams much, or sweet potatoes for that matter. Not until a handful of years ago, in the form of hash browns a friend of mine had served at a brunch she was hosting. Before I tried them served up fried like regular potatoes (which I simply adore in almost every form). I often equated yams with mushy pumpkin…. I suppose I had been given bad yam cookery up until that point….

Anyways…. I had my mind and horizons expanded by both travel and working in an international grade city where I chanced to meet and work with chefs from all over the world, I have garnered a deep appreciation for the mighty yam. Especially if it’s cooked like the mighty potato. The sugar content lends itself so well to caramelization and gives off such a rich flavour.

Liquid smoke is something of a guilty pleasure and a cut corner cheat ingredient I keep in my arsenal for obvious reasons (I live in an apartment and operating a smoker on my balcony would annoy my neighbours). I use it on occasion just to sharpen up or augment the husky flavour of certain dishes. As I’ve said in another post: I love BBQ and the tangy sharpness of anything smoked.

Caraway seeds are an unsung hero of the spice rack; don’t believe me? Find some and play about with how they can alter the depth of a creation. These smoky yam fries are excellently accompanied by a mayonnaise or aioli, but sometimes, simple ketchup or hot sauce will do the trick. I happily use either, depending on my mood.

Smoky Yam Fries

Roasted yam wedges infused with smoke and spices
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack
Cuisine American, Caribbean, Tex-Mex
Servings 4

Equipment

  • Mixing bowl, baking sheet

Ingredients
  

  • 5 whole yams medium size
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp liquid smoke extract
  • 2 tsp caraway seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp jerk seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Instructions
 

  • Preheat your oven to 400F
  • Cut yams into wedges; about 6-8 wedges per yam, depending on thickness
  • Place the yam wedges in a large enough mixing bowl to allow thourough mixing; add remaining ingredients and mix until all the yams are coated.
  • Place the yams on a baking sheet in a single layer; this will ensure even cooking.
  • Place in the oven for approxiamately 30 minutes or until desired browning has occured.
  • Remove from oven and serve immediately.

Video

Notes

One of the things I like about these is they’ll take on whatever flavour gets put to them. I’m rather fond of taking them out once they’re done and tossing them in a bit of BBQ sauce before serving. 
Caraway seeds could be replaced with cumin seeds or ground cumin; cajun spice could also be a welcome replacement or addition to this recipe.
Keyword dairy free, gluten free, Tex Mex, vegan, yam fries

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