Yams get such a bad rap. When cooked right and seasoned with complimentary flavors they can really shine as a side dish or main course. This recipes teaches you how to roast the yams first, converting the starches to sugars and enhancing the depth of flavor. Since the yams aren’t boiled in water, they retain more flavor, not leaking their essence into the cooking water and allowing for more liquid to be used when making this recipe.
Old Ale is a great brew for this recipe. This dextrin rich beer has flavors of toast, toffee, dried fruits (like raisins, fig, date), caramel and a slight molasses undertone. These flavors when mixed with roasted garnet yams is a marriage of flavors, bringing depth and complexity to an otherwise bland side dish.
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Mashed Yams with Old Ale
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A wonderful marriage of roasted garnet yams and a malty Old Ale.
Preheat the oven to 400°F/204°C.
Wash and dry the yams, placing them on a Silpat silicone or parchment paper lined sheet tray. Place the yams in the center of the oven and let roast for an hour.
The yams are done when the internal temperature of the thickest yam reads 210°F/99°C and the yams are starting to leak a sweet amber syrup from a few cracks.
Mashed Yams with Old Ale Directions:
Just before the yams come out of the oven, take a medium sized sauce pot and place it over medium heat. Add the cream and let the cream come to a boil. Reduce the heat to cream a simmer and allow the cream to reduce for about 5 minutes. Add in the Old Ale and salt, bringing the mixture to just a simmer, then turn off the heat.
Once the yams are done roasting, allow them to cool for 15 minutes. Wearing rubber gloves, use a pairing knife to peel the outside skin off the yams. It should come off like wrapping paper. If not, use the pairing knife to scrape off any skin that is sticking to the flesh.
Once all the skin is removed, add that to your compost pile.
You have two choices when making these yams, a velvety smooth puree or a more rustic mashed yam.
For a velvety smooth puree, add the skinned chopped up yams to a food processor and add the hot cream Old Ale mixture. Pulse the food processor until the mixture is super smooth. Transfer the mixture to a serving bowl, crock pot (to keep warm and free up oven space) or into a double boiler. They are ready to be served.
For a chunkier version, take the yams and place them into a bowl. Using a potato masher, mash the yams until you reach a desired texture. Add in the hot cream Old Ale mixture and re-mash to fully incorporate the beer cream. Transfer to a serving bowl, crock pot (to keep warm and free up oven space) or into a double boiler. They are ready to be served.
Cooking Beer Suggestions:
This is such a multifaceted beer style to cook with. It's full of rich dextrin malt flavors, with an English toffee, dried fruit and molasses notes, it can be used many different ways. There are many versions and amount of alcohol in this style. One beer that I enjoy is North Coast Brewing Co.Old Stock Ale. Check BeerAdvocate for other beers in this style.
To make this recipe a Vegan:
Replace the cream with coconut cream or cashew milk. Follow the same directions, reducing the coconut cream or nut milk instead.
Westmalle Dubbel Marshmallow Topping Option:
If you want to top these yams with marshmallows, then they should by my Westmalle Dubbel Marshmallow recipe. Once the recipe has been made, take finished squares of the marshmallows and evenly distribute them over the top of the mashed yams, transferred to a casserole pan or baking dish. Place into a 400°F/205°C preheated oven and bake (convection roast) until the marshmallows are golden brown, about 20 - 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve.