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Emigrated from America to New Zealand and never looked back. Couldn't have asked for a better husband, family & life!


For those stateside who have never seen a kumara, nevermind actually tasting one, I will attempt to describe them the best I can. Here's a photo of purple, gold, and orange ones for you:

First of all, they come in several varieties; orange, purple, yellow (or golden), etc.... They are easy to peel (like potatoes) but tougher to cut up than a potato. When they are cooked, they end up very much like an American sweet potato or, in the case of the orange ones, American yams.

My first suggestion, is to roast them but please...don't cover them in brown sugar and marshmallow like their poor American cousins. No, these are best when savoury, roasted with a bit of salt, pepper and even a touch of garlic. They are also quite tasty prepared like mashed potatoes with butter and used as a casserole topping (Cottage or Shepherd's Pies, for example).

The New Zealand yam looks like this:

Yams are a completely different veg. This is very small in comparison to their other root vegetable cousins (obviously) as they are only 2-4 inches long normally - although I am sure the Aussies out there will boast that theirs are bigger. Hehe... They also come in different varieties (and colours) so I usually get a couple of different kids then cook them together.

Those pictured above are red and "apricot" yams, but they also come in yellow & pink - go figure!

Kiwi yams are a wonderfully unique veg as they seem to look like a potato, chop like radishes or carrots, and cook up like turnips. They don't really offer much flavour alone per se, and they cook alot quicker than potatoes and carrots, but are very healthy and a good source of fibre and vitamins. I often roast them with meat in the oven and they are superb in homemade soups as they tend to completely dissolve into the stock. Yum!

I just thought it was time for a little Kiwi cuisine education for those of you who like to try something new once in awhile. Personally, I am really enjoying the variety of produce on offer here and have found some lovely new Kiwi and Aussie recipes I will try to share as I continue developing my site here.

As for you, Kev (Koshi)...I think I will leave out the Platypus Pie, Wombat Waffles, Roo Stew, Goanna Gulash, and Crocodile Crepes if you don't mind. The Red Back Beer might be good for an upcoming Beer Bread and/or Casserole though.

Cheers, mate!

1 Thoughts & Remarks:

Anonymous said...

Great post NuKiwi! I bought some of these yesterday on impluse at a local supermarket, having never even seen them before. Then today I thought, gee, how exactly do I cook them? A lot of searching finally came up with this blog page. Now I have the confidence to know what what I am doing. Cheers m8!