A simple pleasure when it’s cold : eating a yaki-imo, a hot baked sweet potatoes.
Satsuma imo, Japanese sweet potato are more common in the red skin and pale yellow version.
There exist blue purple ones too.
大学芋 Daigaku imo, literally “the university’s potato”, is a street stall sweet. It’s certainly of Chinese origin, but theses sticky potatoes have become part of the furniture in Japan. Osaka has a famous shop that makes some special ones, dipped in crack maybe, as you can’t stop if you start eaten one. I don’t know their secret. Maybe there is none. You take good satsuma imo (Japanese sweet potato), you fry them and coat in a syrup.
And the results depends on the quality of your ingredients and how you master the process.
Flat and small is easier, so I cut shapes of 5 mm of thickness.
I cook them in 3 steps : steaming till they are half-cooked, then I stir-fry them at 160 degrees C till they soften. I put them aside and bring the oil at 180 degrees, to cook them a little more and get crispiness. I put on oil absorbing paper 2 minutes.
Syrup : 1 tbs of sugar + 1 tbs of honey or mizuame (glucose jelly) + 2 tbs of water. Simmer till it starts getting thicker. Add a few drops of fragrant sesame oil. Pass the freshly fried potatoes (still hot) in this hot syrup.
Decorate with black sesame.
NB : I fry them in normal neutral frying oil, not the dark sesame oil for seasoning. It’s possible to fry in sesame oil but only if you have a different white frying sesame oil.
They have to be soft inside crispy around. They are better if you eat them warm, just after making them.
The “parent” of 里芋 satoimo (Japanese taro) are on the market, they are called 親芋 oyaimo parent potato. That’s not classic sauce béchamel, but the texture is similar.
Let’s start with the beans, well the side dish :
Making pattzuki bean patties with azuki, miso, sesame, onion, parsley, kabocha skin. It is spiced by turmeric (very visible here) and paprika powder plus a few chili flakes.
The redness comes while cooking. Served with leaves of komatsuna.
Oya imo, a big taro.
Here is a photo of family of 親芋 oyaimo, the parent with its kids and grand-kids :
from this blog いきもの は おもしろい！
I cut and peeled a thick slice, boiled till tender.
The sauce is green as it contains lots of fresh parsley.
Fry minced onion, garlic, feet of shiitake mushroom. Blend together silky tofu, white wine, a tbs of potato starch. Add into the pan. Season with salt, pepper. Simmer.
Let cool and pass in the blender with 2 volumes of fresh parsley per volume of sauce. Reheat slowly before serving.
The oyaimo with sauce and steamed stalks of komatsuna.
Two small Japanese dishes, passed through the gourmande’s paws as usual. That’s not super original, but maybe you don’t know these two.
This is the Kyoto style taro, kyo-imo. I have peeled one, cut in a few rolls, boiled till tender. Then I’ve patted them dry and deep-fried till they get colored.
I have left the fish flakes (you can omit them), added dry togarashi chili pepper, flavored with soy sauce and reheated slightly. I’ve added a little potato starch to thicken and poured on the hot kyo-imo.
Serve hot while it’s crunchy around.
I have used these black soy beans (kuromame) instead of the white. And I have proceeded exactly as I do for white tofu (recipes here).
It’s zaru tofu, shaped in a basket.
Topped with kezuri-katsuo (fish flakes), and at the side soy sauce to pour on it.
You’ll see the rest of the menu in the next post… (soon here)
Sweet potato (satsuma imo), potato and persimmon (kaki) season is back.
These are the main topics and visitors’ current obsessions :
Nordic wave :
American mood :
On the road to Christmas :