Candied yams are a classic comfort food that brings warmth and sweetness to any table. This dish combines the natural goodness of yams with the richness of butter and the aromatic flavors of spices. The result is a mouthwatering side dish that’s perfect for holidays, gatherings, or simply as a treat for yourself. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the process of creating these irresistible candied yams from scratch.
Ingredients You’ll Need:
To create these delectable candied yams, gather the following ingredients:
- 5 Yams
- ½ Cup Butter
- 1 Cup Brown Sugar
- 1 Cup Sugar
- ½ Cup Water
- 1 Tbsp Vanilla Extract
- 1 ¼ tsps. Cinnamon
- ½ tsp Ginger
- ½ tsp Nutmeg
- ¼ tsp Ground Cloves
Here’s how to make candied yams that will have everyone asking for seconds:
1. Prepare the Yams:
Start by washing, peeling, and slicing the yams into uniform pieces. This ensures even cooking and a consistent texture.
2. Melt Butter with Sugars:
In a saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the brown sugar and regular sugar, stirring until the sugars are fully dissolved. This creates a rich, sweet base for the candied yams.
3. Add Spices and Vanilla:
Once the sugars are dissolved, add the cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and ground cloves. These spices infuse the mixture with warm, aromatic flavors. Stir in the vanilla extract for an extra layer of sweetness.
4. Pour Mixture Over Yams:
Place the sliced yams in a baking dish and pour the buttery sugar mixture over them. Ensure the yams are well-coated, so every bite is bursting with flavor.
5. Bake Covered:
Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 minutes. The yams will absorb the flavors while becoming tender.
6. Mix and Bake Uncovered:
After 45 minutes, remove the dish from the oven, carefully remove the foil, and give the yams a gentle stir to evenly distribute the flavors. Return the dish to the oven and bake uncovered for an additional 15 minutes. This step adds a delightful caramelization to the yams.
7. Final Touch and Serving:
Once the yams are tender and beautifully caramelized, remove the dish from the oven. Let them cool for a few minutes before serving. The candied yams are now ready to be enjoyed as a scrumptious side dish that’s sure to be a hit!
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Are candied yams the same as sweet potatoes?
No, candied yams are typically made from orange-fleshed sweet potatoes. The terms are often used interchangeably, but true yams have a different texture and flavor profile.
Can I adjust the level of sweetness?
Absolutely! Feel free to adjust the amount of sugar according to your preference. You can also experiment with different spices to create your own unique flavor.
Can I make candied yams ahead of time?
Yes, you can prepare candied yams a day ahead and store them in the refrigerator. Reheat them in the oven at a low temperature before serving.
Can I use margarine instead of butter?
While butter adds a rich flavor, you can use margarine as a substitute. Keep in mind that the flavor and texture may vary slightly.
Are candied yams gluten-free?
Yes, the recipe as outlined is gluten-free. However, it’s always a good practice to check the labels of your ingredients to ensure they’re free from gluten.
Can I add marshmallows on top?
Certainly! Adding a layer of marshmallows on top of the candied yams during the last few minutes of baking can create a delightful, gooey topping.
Creating candied yams is a delightful culinary adventure that combines the earthy sweetness of yams with the indulgent richness of butter and spices. With our step-by-step guide, you’ll confidently whip up a dish that’s not only flavorful but also visually appealing. Whether you’re serving it at a family gathering or savoring it as a personal treat, these candied yams are bound to become a favorite on your table.