Friday, April 29, 2016

Y is for Yam Bean

Y is for Yam Bean

I have just discovered Yam Bean is another name for Jicama. Luckily for me. This is some of what Wiki has to say about itThe jícama  or yam bean  is a vine widely grown for its large (10-15 cm diameter and up to 20 kg weight), spherical or elongated taproot. After removal of the thick, fibrous brown skin, the white flesh of the root can be eaten cooked or raw. Crisp, moist, and slightly sweet, the flesh draws comparison with that of the apple. The plant produces seeds that are comparable to lima beans, and that are sometimes eaten when young in places where the jicama is native. The mature seeds contain high levels of rotenone, a chemical used as an insecticide and pesticide. The remainder of the jícama plant is very poisonous. There seem to be different varieties grown in South America all with similarities to one another. I didn't realise the part we eat was actually the tap root nor that the beans can also be eaten although I have never come across them anywhere.

If you are a regular reader, you might know that I love dumplings. They are actually not that difficult to make if you use wonton wrappers. Admittedly I get my dumpling fix at The Mandarin when we go, at Chinese New Year especially when they have lots of different dumplings, but they always have some all year round.



Steamed Pork and Jicama Dumplings

Though these dumplings are traditionally cooked in stacked Asian bamboo or metal steamers, you can also use a pasta pot with a deep perforated colander-steamer insert. If your pot has a second shallow colander-steamer insert, you can steam 2 batches at once. The dumplings should be served
warm, so reheat them in batches as platters need replenishing.


INGREDIENTS

  1. 1 large egg white
    2 tablespoons minced peeled fresh ginger
    1 tablespoon minced garlic
    1 tablespoon peanut or vegetable oil
    1 tablespoon Asian sesame oil
    1 tablespoon soy sauce
    1 tablespoon cornstarch
    2 teaspoons sugar
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 cup diced (1/4 inch) peeled jicama
    1/2 cup minced scallion
    1 1/2 pound ground pork (not lean)
    60 wonton wrappers (from two 12- to 14-ounce packages), thawed if frozen
    2 tablespoons black sesame seeds, toasted
    2 tablespoons white sesame seeds, toasted

  1. PREPARATION

    1. Make filling:
      1. Lightly whisk egg white in a large bowl, then whisk in ginger, garlic, peanut oil, sesame oil, soy sauce, cornstarch, sugar, and salt. Add jicama, scallion, and pork and mix together with your hands until combined well.
    2. Assemble dumplings:
      1. Separate wonton wrappers and restack in piles of 10. Cut through each stack with cookie cutter and discard trimmings. Arrange 6 rounds on a work surface (keep remaining rounds covered with plastic wrap) and mound a scant tablespoon filling in center of each. Lightly moisten edge of wrappers with a finger dipped in water. Working with 1 at a time and leaving dumpling on flat surface, gather edge of wrapper around side of filling, pleating wrapper to form a cup and pressing pleats against filling (leave dumpling open at top). Flatten filling flush with edge of wrapper with wet finger and transfer dumpling to a tray. Make more dumplings in same manner with remaining rounds and filling.
    3. Steam dumplings:
      1. Generously oil bottom of colander-steamer insert and bring a few inches of water to a boil in pot so that bottom of insert sits above water. Arrange 10 dumplings, about 1/2 inch apart, in insert and steam over moderate heat, covered, until dough is translucent and filling is just cooked through, about 6 minutes.
      2. Stir together black and white sesame seeds and sprinkle over dumplings. Serve immediately.
    Cooks' note:
    ·Dumplings (without sesame seeds) can be formed and steamed 1 day ahead and cooled completely, then chilled, covered. Steamed dumplings can also be frozen 1 week; freeze in 1 layer on a plastic-wrapped tray until hardened, then transfer to a sealable plastic bag. Reheat (do not thaw if frozen) in colander-steamer insert over simmering water (over low heat) until heated through, about 6 minutes.

Have a great day
 

34 comments:

  1. Wow. Better late than never. I'm so glad I "found" you. Will certainly try some of the recipes. I too did food last year! :) Visiting from the A2Z Challenge!

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    1. Hi Ipsita. Glad you found me too.

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  2. Hi Jo - not so sure about Yam - and I certainly didn't know its history etc ... well done on finding a recipe to fit .. cheers Hilary

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    1. Hilary, there is Yam and Yam Bean, two different items. Yams are similar to sweet potatoes. I like Matt doesn't.

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  3. Very cool, I didn't know they were the same name. I saw these in the store last week and almost bought two but passed when I saw the Thai ginger/galanga.

    PS: Shhh, I'm using it as part of my Friday Question today.

    PPS: I'll be back later to read all your adventures. It's getting on five am here and burrrr, still cold.

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    1. They have a very mild taste Ivy. But really crunchy. Well at least I will know what you are posting about. Pretty chilly here. What are you doing up at 5 a.m.?

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    2. I often wake very early to get to my labs (baking). I used to be a prep cook as my job, we started early there too. But even before that, I used to wake at 4:30 to get my writing done.

      Really, I just love the wee early hours. My brain is on fire and ready to write, so I take it when I can. But on the weekends (Fri-Sun), I will blog, too.

      Chilly here too. Weird, weird spring.

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    3. I am not an early morning person Ivy. Mind you if you got into the habit at work I guess it stuck.

      Still pretty cool here too, not good for the asparagus.

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    4. I actually got the habit LONG before becoming a prep cook. This was back long before marriage, when I was a working a nine to five job. I would wake at 4 or 4:30 each morning to get my writing done before going to work.

      It was wonderful, to wake, write, sneak a walk in, have breakfast and then go to work work.

      Are you a night person? Sorry about the asparagus. They are popping up in our stores but I haven't gotten any yet.

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    5. I can see the pleasure in that Ivy, I have done it on the odd occasion, but I cannot imagine doing it all the time. Not really a night or morning person any more. We have asparagus in the stores, but it's the fresh local grown stuff I am waiting for from the farm.

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  4. This is a new ingredient on me - not heard of it before. Unless it has even more names :)
    Tasha
    Tasha's Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

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    1. I have tried it once Tasha. Maybe I should use it some more to get familiar with it.

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  5. Yam has always meant a type of potato to me, so now you have taught me another thing I did not know.

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    1. They are in our stores here and have been for a long time Bob.

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  6. I've seen jicama in the supermarket but never knew what it was. Is it a fruit? vegetable? How do you eat it? Thanks for the info! Now I know. If it tastes kind of like an apple I'd like to try it.

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    1. It didn't taste much like an apple to me JoJo. It is good in salads, crunchy.

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  7. Learning something new with yam bean being jicama. I do like jicama!

    betty

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    1. Only ever tried it the once Betty. Time I did so again.

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  8. Hi Jo, finally getting to check in on the A 2 Z - I'd never heard of Yam Beans - must watch out next time we get to an Asian supermarket.
    Well done on almost completing another marathon :)

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    1. Hi Fil, are you back from Oz now? Sounded like you had a great tour. Jicama, most usual name, oh, and pronounced with an h sound, is available in our regular produce departments over here.

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  9. I've never had jicama but it sounds interesting. I'm not a dumpling fan but I might like it raw. I'm going to search it out.

    Susan Says

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    1. One of my happiest times of the year, Susan, is when the Chinese celebrate their New Year because they do so with lots of different dumplings which, to me, are yummy. However, jicama can be used in many ways including raw in salads for instance.

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  10. We both did something with yams. Great minds do think alike!

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    1. Even if they were different yams Liz. One of these days I will get to try real yams.

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  11. Y is for yum! I look forward to trying some of your recipes. I've never made Asian-style dumplings, but my husband is so addicted to pot stickers that I should give dumplings a try. And I love raw jicama in a salad or as a dipper for salse. Thanks for the recipes!
    @RhondaGilmour from
    Late Blooming Rose

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    1. You really should Rhonda. I am like your hubby addicted to them. Luckily I can get my fill at our local Mandarin Chinese buffet. We have made pot stickers but not recently.

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  12. You've done an excellent job with the challenge this year, Jo. I've been very impressed and have learned many things from your posts. Now I feel like dumplings.

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    1. Thank you ma'am, I am appreciative. I have also learned a few things. I agree, I also feel like dumplings Pinky. Have you ever made them? Matt used to but hasn't for a long time. Doesn't really cook any more.

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  13. Looks yummy! If I make this, I'd have to be very careful to use only the right part of the yam bean!

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    1. Well jicama are sold without anything poisonous on them here Cynthia.

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  14. I'v never heard of a Yam Bean, and I don't like dumplings, the texture kills it for me. Reminds me of snails, that texture in any food is a turn off!

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    1. Well as I love snails in garlic butter, that wouldn't put me off. However, I don't think the texture of dumplings is even vaguely similar Yolanda.

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  15. I have never heard of this at all and it would be something I would try. Interesting how we can eat one part but the other is really poisonous. I wonder how, when they first found this vegetable, how did they know what to eat...and what not to??

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    1. As I understand it Birgit, the primitive peoples would try a small amount on their tongue and if it didn't sting or cause a problem, they would try swallowing some and if that was OK they the tried eating more etc. etc.

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