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The sweet potato, commonly called a yam in parts of North America (although they are not actually yams), belongs to the family Convolvulaceae, as does bindweed. It has a large, starchy, sweet tasting tuberous root that is an important root vegetable. The young leaves and shoots are sometimes eaten as greens. The sweet potato is only distantly related to the potato (Solanum tuberosum). It is even more distantly related to the true yam (Dioscorea species), which is native to Africa and Asia.
Baked sweet potatoes are sometimes offered in restaurants as an alternative to baked potatoes. They are often topped with brown sugar and butter. In Dominican Republic sweet potato is enjoyed for breakfast.
The young leaves and vine tips of sweet potato leaves are widely consumed as a vegetable West African countries (Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia for example). Sweet potato leaves and shoots are a good source of vitamins A, vitamin C, and B2 (Riboflavin).
Steamed/Boiled chunks, for a simple and healthy snack, chunks of sweet potato may be boiled in water or cooked in the microwave.
Raw sweet potatoes can be eaten as well, most easily in chip form. They taste somewhat like a sweet carrot.
Sweet potatoes became popular very early in the islands of the Pacific Ocean, spreading from Polynesia to Japan and the Philippines. One reason is that they were a reliable crop in cases of crop failure of other staple foods because of typhoon flooding. They are featured in many favorite dishes in Japan, Taiwan, the Philippines, and other island nations. Indonesia, Vietnam, India, and some other Asian countries are also large sweet potato growers. Sweet potato, also known as kelang in Tulu is part of Udupi cusine. Uganda (the second largest grower after China), Rwanda, and some other African countries also grow a large crop which is an important part of their peoples' diets. The New World, the original home of the sweet potato, grows less than three percent (3%) of the world's supply. Europe has only a very small sweet potato production, mainly in Portugal. In the Caribbean, a variety of the sweet potato called the boniato is popular. The flesh of the boniato is cream-coloured, unlike the more popular orange hue seen in other varieties. Boniatos are not as sweet and moist as other sweet potatoes, but many people prefer their fluffier consistency and more delicate flavour.
Try our recipe for a really colourful sweet potato salsa.
How much does one cup of sweet potatoes / yams weigh?
Estimated US cup to weight equivalents:
|Sweet Potatoes / Yams||raw - sliced||
|150 grams||> 5 ounces|
|Sweet Potatoes / Yams||cooked - mashed||
|200 grams||7 ounces|
Every ingredient has a cups to ounces or grams conversion table. Search for the ingredient, cup to weight conversions are at the end of each ingredient page.
Batata Doce de Aljezur (Aljezur sweet potato)
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