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Old 03-25-2007, 05:57 PM   #1
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Sweet Potatoes versus Yams

Could anyone please either point me to some pictures or describe for me the difference between a yam and a sweetpotato? Are yams actually the sweeter, more orange of the two, with a thin skin--while sweet potatoes are a lighter color, almost yellow, and not quite as sweet as a yam?

I'm so confused....

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Old 03-25-2007, 06:53 PM   #2
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Yams are a tropical-vine tuber that is popular in South and Central America, parts of Asia and Africa and in the West Indies. Sweet potatoes and Yams or simular in many ways and therefore are often confused with one another. They are in fact two different species of plants. Here in the US
sweet potatoes are often called Yams and to add even more confusion, sweet potatoes that are canned are often labeled as "Yams". True yams are rarely marketed in the U.S. and are seldom grown.
Yams are somewhat sweeter than the sweet potato but are lower in some vitamins. There are several varieties of sweet potatoes grown. Beauregard, Porta Rican, Centennial, Jewel, and Vardaman are a few. You might find a true Yam in Latin American Markets...

Hope this helps
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Old 03-25-2007, 09:56 PM   #3
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Uncle Bob is right both names are the same in the US meaning to us just sweet potatoes and if I am right yams can get really really huge not like the sweet potatoes we get.I love sweet potatoes.
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Old 03-25-2007, 10:09 PM   #4
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Years ago some farmers developed an orange colored variety of sweet potatoes and decided to market them as yams to differentiate them from white sweet potatoes.
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Old 03-26-2007, 03:42 AM   #5
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In the Far East, sweet potatoes are either pale yellow or yellow and are sweet. Yams are white or purple and are rather bland. However, there is another variety which is a cross between a light yellow sweet potato and purple yam. Except for a few savoury yam dishes, both tubers are used mainly in desserts.

Edited to read sweet potatoes are either pale yellow or orange...
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Old 03-26-2007, 03:56 AM   #6
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mmmmm....I love sweet potatos! And they are very good for you... WHFoods: Sweet potatoes one of my favorite sites. I use it for making up my own healthy recipes!
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Old 03-26-2007, 05:09 AM   #7
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I love them both, but find the deeper orange color much more palatable (marketed as a "yam" at my market) than the pale yellow tuber, marketed as a "sweetpptato". It's just very confusing, but this is quite helpful. Thank you.
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Old 03-26-2007, 05:42 AM   #8
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I find some picture for yams and sweetpotato.

Yams picture , sweetpotato picture

and you can visit my blog, there is a post about sweet potato muffin

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Old 03-26-2007, 05:46 AM   #9
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Yikes, those "yams" are actually scary looking! Thanks :)
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Old 03-26-2007, 08:04 AM   #10
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No yams (the real kind) in the US unless imported as an oddity, which I think I saw at Whole Foods one time.
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Old 03-26-2007, 03:52 PM   #11
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Pictures of S.E. Asian tubers are as follows:
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Name:	Orange Sweet Potatoesjpg.jpg
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Old 03-30-2007, 06:25 PM   #12
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Could anyone give me some instructions on the simplest way to prepare yams? Peel and boil, would that be it? Is it the same with potatoes?
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Old 03-30-2007, 06:49 PM   #13
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I have never prepared a "true" yam. It is my understanding that you would cook/prepare it as you would a Sweet Potato...So any recipe for sweet potatoes should also apply to a yam.

Do you have a true yam or do you have a sweet potato?

Hope this helps

Enjoy!
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Old 03-30-2007, 07:18 PM   #14
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Growing up, the only sweet potatoes I ever tasted were the sweet, syrupy ones that my mom and grandma made for Thanksgiving, or the ones with marshmallows, like some of the church ladies made. I didn't care for them at all.
But when I married that Cajun, I found out about "Lousiana Yams". Those deep orange sweet potatoes tasted like no others I'd ever tasted. All I did was prepare them like a regular baked potato, and eat them with butter.

I realize now, that they are not true yams, but I can understand why the growers would want to differentiate them from other varieties. There's nothing like them! I loved them so much, that when I was expecting, I made myself sick by eating FOUR of them in one night, along with a couple of helpings of cooked cabbage. I won't do that again!
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Old 03-30-2007, 08:01 PM   #15
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I had no idea there was a difference, I am learning again...
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Old 03-30-2007, 08:50 PM   #16
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Here's what I like to do--I cut them up into steakfry-size pieces, and place them on a glass pie plate. I microwave them just for a few minutes, until they are a touch tender. I then spread them out on a panini grill, put some butter and brown sugar on them, and put the panini press down, grilling them for about 10 minutes or so on medium heat. They are very yummy this way! ...just an alternative to the traditional baked sweetpotato--which I also love.
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Old 03-30-2007, 10:30 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fliggie
Here's what I like to do--I cut them up into steakfry-size pieces, and place them on a glass pie plate. I microwave them just for a few minutes, until they are a touch tender. I then spread them out on a panini grill, put some butter and brown sugar on them, and put the panini press down, grilling them for about 10 minutes or so on medium heat. They are very yummy this way! ...just an alternative to the traditional baked sweetpotato--which I also love.
Ooh, thanks! I always bake ours, but you've given me something new to try. Those sound great!
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Old 03-31-2007, 04:47 AM   #18
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To make it more confusing, the sweet potato is really not a tater at all. The two are in different taxonomic 'families'.

But it looks like a tater, is cooked like a tater, and to me it is a tater.

Love the orange variety, but that is generally all we can find. The yellower version, I guess the more traditional sweet potato, I rarely see. And I kinda miss them.

I like those suckers.

Sigh.
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Old 03-31-2007, 04:30 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by auntdot
Love the orange variety, but that is generally all we can find. The yellower version, I guess the more traditional sweet potato, I rarely see. And I kinda miss them.

I like those suckers.

Sigh.
We get both here. In fact, we get the yellow ones (my favorite), medium orange ones where the outside is really quite similar to the yellow ones, and very dark orange ones where the exterior can be almost purple. Heck, I don't know - maybe the almost purple ones are a fourth variety, LOL. But to me there is nothing like a baked yellow sweet potato with a little butter and salt. Mmmmmm, good.
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Old 03-31-2007, 07:32 PM   #20
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I like the orange ones best. They are so sweet that all they need is butter.
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