Steamed Japanese Yams with Curry and Lime

May 13, 2015

These tender, steamed Japanese yams are flavored with curry powder and a twist of lime. They make a great side dish or snack!

Steamed Japanese Yams with Curry and Lime | Fake Food Free 
I’ve been intrigued by the world of potatoes and yams for some time. I think it probably started when we traveled to Ireland. Visiting the food markets there opened me up to the reality that there were more varieties than the red skinned and russet I was familiar with.

Then my potato passion moved to my own garden when I was growing red and white skinned potatoes. The excitement reached epic proportions the year I grew Adirondack Blue potatoes (what many people refer to as purple potatoes) and harvested 15 pounds from the garden!

I’m not growing my own potatoes right now, but the adventures have not ceased. They continue with cuisines and cultures that I have to admit took me completely by surprise. I’m not sure I ever expected to find so many Asian varieties of potatoes. They are of the sweet potato and yam family, and they are all over my favorite farmers market in Oakland. Purple, white, orange, yellow — it is seriously a rainbow of taters out there. 

Last week, I picked up some Japanese yams which, right or wrong, are in the potato family for me. 

Okay, first we should probably have the yam and sweet potato debate. My research tells me that the consensus is that most of what we eat in the States, even if they are called yams, are in fact, sweet potatoes. Fair enough. But the sign over these root vegetables at the market said Japanese yams, so that is what I’m going with. 

They have a red skin and a white, sweet and starchy flesh that is on the dry side when compared to our traditional orange sweet potato. 

Steamed Japanese Yams with Curry and Lime | Fake Food Free

I think that is what I love about potatoes. Whether standard potatoes or sweet potatoes, there is so much variation in the color, texture and sweetness of flavors. 

My favorite way to eat sweet potatoes these days is steamed. I like how it makes the potatoes slightly tender, but firm enough to toss them in seasonings. 

So that is exactly how I prepared these Japanese yams. They are so simple to make, and in addition to a side dish, you can also serve them up with a few toothpicks for some sweet and salty snacking. 

Steamed Japanese Yams with Curry and Lime | Fake Food Free


Steamed Japanese Yams with Curry and Lime

Makes: 4 servings


6 small Japanese yams, sliced
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro
1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/8 teaspoon salt (about 2 generous pinches)


Fill a 2 to 3 quart pot about half full with water. (I use a pot that has a steaming basket that fits in the pot.) Bring the water to a low boil over medium-high heat. Place the sliced yams in the steaming basket. Place the basket over the water and cover with a lid. Steam for about 10 minutes, or until the yams are tender when pricked with a fork. Transfer the yams to a medium bowl. Sprinkle in the cilantro.

In a small dish, stir together the lime juice, sesame oil and curry powder. Pour this over the yams and toss to coat. Add the salt a pinch at a time until the potatoes reach your desired flavor. Serve warm. 


Thanks for reading! All images and content are the property of Fake Food Free unless otherwise stated. Please do not republish full recipes and images without written permission. What is okay? Feel free to Pin images, share links to my posts or share the photo in a round up post with the title of this recipe and a link back to the post. Confused about copyright and food blogs? Here is some helpful information on Recipe Attribution. If you want to use a photo or full recipe, just ask. I’m sure we can work something out.  

You Might Also Like

  • Velva May 13, 2015 at 6:19 pm

    These look delicious! I never thought about steaming any type of potato and I think it is an excellent idea. I really like the curry powder 🙂


    • Lori May 13, 2015 at 9:22 pm

      Thanks, Velva! I especially like sweet potatoes/yams steamed. The resulting texture is nice for something different.

  • Joanne May 14, 2015 at 4:15 am

    Japanese yams are some of my favorites also! I find them to have a more subtle sweetness than orange yams, which I think is brought out perfectly with these flavors!

    • Lori May 14, 2015 at 6:28 am

      Yes! Definitely love the subtle flavor!

  • Cathleen @ A Taste Of Madness May 15, 2015 at 3:49 am

    This looks amazing!! I need to be experimenting with yams more, because I am craving this right 6 AM!

    • Lori May 18, 2015 at 7:47 am

      Thanks, Cathleen! And these could pass for breakfast, no problem! 🙂