Japanese Sweet Potatoes
Inventory, 40 lbs : 1.33
This item was last sold on : 03/19/18
Japanese sweet potatoes are long, slender, and irregularly shaped with tapered ends. Its outer flesh is brown with a distinct reddish hue and has small, shallow eyes. The inner flesh is a creamy white to pale yellow that deepens to a golden hue when cooked. The Japanese sweet potato offers a nutty, slightly floral flavor with hints of chestnut and caramel and a drier, starchier texture than other sweet potato varieties.
Japanese sweet potatoes are available in late summer through winter.
Japanese sweet potatoes, botanically classified as Ipomoea batatas, are a member of the Convolvulaceae family. Japanese sweet potatoes are rich and dense and are often eaten as a snack in Japan, where they are also known as Satsuma-imo. In Japan and throughout Asia, Japanese sweet potatoes are also used to make noodles, sweets, and confectionaries, and are employed as a thickener in soups. They are sometimes used to make shochu, a popular alcoholic beverage.
Japanese sweet potatoes contain fiber, thiamin, vitamins A and C, and trace amounts of protein.
Japanese sweet potatoes can be roasted, baked, boiled, stir-fried and steamed, and are often eaten with the skin on. Japanese sweet potatoes are popularly used in tempura, curries, stews, and soups. A very common dish is Imo Gohan, where Japanese sweet potatoes are sliced or cubed and steamed along with rice, flavoring it with its sweetness. Daigaku Imo, another popular dish, cubes, deep-fried, and candies the sweet potato in a syrup of sugar and soy sauce, and is sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds. Complementary flavorings and pairings for Japanese sweet potatoes include vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, miso, scallions, carrots, apples, and chestnuts. Japanese sweet potatoes will keep for up to a week when stored in a cool, dry, and dark place.
Japanese sweet potatoes often evoke nostalgia in Japanese culture. Post-World War II, they were sold by street vendors from carts or trucks. These vendors would drive into neighborhoods calling out "Ishi yaki-imo," meaning "stone-roasted sweet potato," indicating that the Japanese sweet potatoes were slow-cooked on hot stones until the flavor caramelized and the skin was browned. Such vendors are now rare, and it is a considered a special treat to run into one. Japanese sweet potatoes are also a traditional New Year's treat in Kuri Kinton, a dish that utilizes mashed Japanese sweet potato and boiled chestnuts. The dish symbolizes prosperity and good fortune for the coming year because of the potatoes golden hue when cooked.
Sweet potatoes were brought from China to Japan in the 1600s, and the Japanese sweet potato went through a series of name changes as it made its way from China across Japan. Known initially as "Kansho" in China, its name changed first to "Karaimo" when it arrived in Okinawa. It was finally changed to "Satsuma-imo," meaning "Satsuma potatoes," which reflects the old name of the southern Kagoshima Prefecture where Japanese sweet potatoes are commonly grown today. The sweet potato spread across Japan and became so revered that shrines and temples in honor of the humble tuber can still be found. Japanese sweet potatoes can be found in Asia and specialty grocers and farmers markets in North America and Europe.
Restaurants currently purchasing this product as an ingredient for their menu.
|JRDN Restaurant||San Diego CA||858-270-5736|
|Fishery||San Diego CA||858-272-9985|
|Brigantine Poway||Poway CA||858-486-3066|
|Dija Mara||Oceanside CA||760-231-5376|
|Urban Kitchen||San Diego CA||619-239-2222|
|Cloak and Petal||San Diego CA||619-501-5505|
|Searsucker Downtown||San Diego CA||619-233-7327|
|Georges at the Cove||San Diego CA||858-454-4244|
|The Pearl Hotel||San Diego CA||877-732-7573|
Recipes that include Japanese Sweet Potatoes. One is easiest, three is harder.
People have spotted Japanese Sweet Potatoes using the Specialty Produce app for iPhone and Android.
Produce Spotting allows you to share your produce discoveries with your neighbors and the world! Is your market carrying green dragon apples? Is a chef doing things with shaved fennel that are out of this world? Pinpoint your location annonymously through the Specialty Produce App and let others know about unique flavors that are around them.