When I printed up the Bountiful Basket Volunteer Site Coordinator (VSC) paperwork on Friday night I looked through and was surprised to see that we would only be receiving one yam per basket. When I told my husband, he was equally surprised and we proceeded to have a merry (albeit disrespectful) discussion about what a family of 6 could do with ONE YAM. However, when the boxes of yams were opened at the site the next day, all jokes of individual dollops of mashed yam were cast aside. Oh we of little faith…we should have known Sally and Tanya would not let us down. Instead of the long, thin, small yams we were expecting we discovered HUGE yams quickly deemed by volunteers “giant baby yams”. Not baby because they were small mind you. Baby because these yams are in fact the size of a newborn baby. The whopper in the picture above weighed in at 5 lbs 6 oz (the yam, not the child).
While these ginormous yams were fun, and kept the participants and volunteers smiling all through the cold morning distribution, I will admit I felt a level of culinary intimidation when I hoisted the baby yam out of its basket and placed it on my counter. It then sat, intimidating me for a few days before I finally decided to buckle down and do something with it. And am I ever glad I did. That baby yam turned into a breakfast that the whole family enjoyed. It’s a good thing too because it made a LOT! My Paleo Sweet Potato Pancakes are both delicious and nutritious. In fact, These are so yummy hubby not only ate them, he volunteered to clean up (a chore which included scrubbing the orange-tinted shredder attachment).
I start off by partially baking the yam. I don’t like yam mush so I bake it to where it is “al dente”. This allows me to run it through my Kitchen Aid shredder attachment without making puree. Once it’s all shred it should look like this:
I gently stir in diced onion, coconut flour, spices, and beaten egg. Then I use a measuring cup to form it and gently press it into the hot coconut oil.
Once they’re crispy and brown on both sides pat the pancakes down with a paper towel, serve up, and enjoy!
If you have been a little intimidated by the big yam I recommend popping it in the oven and starting on these delicious Paleo Sweet Potato Pancakes (you may want to have a chore in mind just in case you get appreciative helpers). If crispy, fried, pancakes aren’t your thing (though I don’t know how they could not be) I’ve included links to other recipes that will help you get over the intimidation. Grab that yam and get cooking!
1 Giant Baby Yam (or several normal yams…whatever)
1 onion finely diced
1-2 Tbls of Coconut Flour (This is just a binder- you can use whatever flour is on hand)
Dash of Nutmeg (for a different flavor try smoky paprika or chili powder)
Salt and Pepper
1/4 cup of coconut oil
Bake the yam at 350 for about 45 mins (varies depending on size). You do not want it to get soft all the way through. You want it cooked soft enough to pierce but staying firm enough that a knife will not go all the way through easily (think al-dente pasta)
Place the yam in the fridge until it is cool enough to work with.
Peel the yam. Use a box grater or the grating attachment to a mixer to grate the yam into "hashbrown" style strings. (Be careful- it mushes easily but this recipe tastes better with some texture.)
Season the grated yam with the coconut flour, nutmeg, salt, and pepper to taste.
GENTLY mix in the diced onion
Beat the eggs and pour into the yam mixture. Use a fork to gently toss the egg into the yam.
Melt the coconut oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
Spoon 1/4 cup of yam mix into the coconut oil gently pressing to spread and flatten into a pancake shape. Repeat for as many pancakes as your skillet will comfortably hold.
Flip when the first side is crispy and browning.
When both sides are done remove onto paper towels and sprinkle with sea salt.