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All About SweetPotatoes

  • SweetPotato--one word-- is not a potato, not even a distant cousin. Potatoes are truly tubers; SweetPotatoes are roots.
Jersey Sweetpotato Golden Sweetpotato Japanese Sweetpotato
     
  • SweetPotatoes are part of the morning glory family (Convolvulaceae); their genus Ipomoea batatas.
  • SweetPotatoes are as American as apple pie, and even more so. Native Americans were already growing SweetPotatoes when Columbus came to these shores in 1492.
  • SweetPotatoes have been growing in the South for as early as 1648. Today, more than 40 percent of the national supply of SweetPotatoes comes from North Carolina, the SweetPotato Capitol of America.
Hannah Sweetpotato Okinawan Sweetpotato Jewel Sweetpotato
     
  • A favorite of the herbivore dinosaurs??? SweetPotatoes have been around since prehistoric times
  • What's in a name? When it comes to the yam, a bit of confusion. What is marketed in the United States as "yams" are really a variety of SweetPotato, grown in the South. A true yam is a starchy edible root of the Dioscorea genus, and is generally imported to America from the Caribbean. It is rough and scaly and very low in beta carotene.
  • "Yams," as the industry and general public perceives them, are actually SweetPotatoes with a vivid orange color and a soft moist consistency when cooked, and tend to have a sweeter flavor. Other varieties of SweetPotatoes are lighter skinned and have a firmer, drier texture when cooked.
  • SweetPotatoes are smooth with skins that can vary in color, depending on the variety, from pale yellow to deep purple to vivid orange. Flesh colors can range from light yellow to pink, red or orange.
  • The American "yam" is a copper-colored SweetPotato with a golden-red flesh that is moist when cooked and has a sweeter flavor than the "drier" varieties, They are grown primarily in the South, most notably North Carolina and Louisiana with California, Mississippi, Alabama, New Jersey, Texas, Georgia and South Carolina following. Other varieties, grown in California and the North, around New Jersey, have a flesh that is light yellow or pale orange in color and are drier and stay firmer when cooked.
Red Garnet Sweetpotato Beau Regarde Sweetpotato White Sweetpotato
     
North Carolina SweetPotatoes are available throughout the year. They are in abundance from September through June. SweetPotatoes can be baked, boiled, broiled, stuffed, steamed, stir-fried or microwaved. They go well with pork, chicken, turkey, beef, lamb and other meats, as well as fish, and can be included in recipes for stews, soups and salads as well as in baked goods such as moist breads, pies, custards and cakes.

 

 

 

 

 
 
           
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