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Where to find Real Yams in Dallas (Not Sweet Potatoes)

Anyone know where to find real yams in dallas? As in the real African yams which can grow up to seven feet, not small sweet potatoes? I realize they are most prevalent in the fall season, but don't even know where to look to start. I would prefer to find fresh, but would even consider canned.

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  1. do you have any local caribbean markets? here's a place called "caribbean goodies" http://yellowpages.superpages.com/lis...

    maybe this caribbean restaurant can give you a supplier's name: http://www.dallasobserver.com/adIndex...

    1. You might try NewFlower or Sprouts farmers markets. I've seen them there, but I'm not certain they are always marked "yams" and "sweet potatoes," so it helps if you can identify them on sight. There are also a lot of ethnic (particularly Hispanic and Asian) markets in the area that are likely to have them. The key is to let your fingers do the walking. Call first and ask to talk to someone in produce. Good luck!

      Oh, and for the record, ALL canned "sweet potatoes" are really yams, so there should be no problem if you want canned.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Caroline1

        caroline, i'm pretty sure all canned sweet potatoes are in fact sweet potatoes. i think you meant to say that all canned "yams" are in fact sweet potatoes, right? http://www.associatedcontent.com/arti...

        1. re: alkapal

          Yup. That's what I meant! I think I'm loosing my ability to talk on the phone and write about something I'm not talking about at the same time. <sigh> I wonder if I made sense while I was talking to my son? Do Volvos and yams mix well? '-)

      2. I understand what you are asking, and it has nothing to do with the American Yam/Sweet potato.

        I don't know for sure where you can find them right now, but I know Whole Foods often carries them. Also check latin markets. They also cater to Caribbean shoppers, who enjoy "real" yams.

        1. Thanks guys, I asked at Whole Foods Richardson one time and they told me pretty much all of thier stuff are actually Sweet Potatoes. But I have not asked at the WF on Forest/ Preston. As I understand it real yams are actually white-ish to purple in flesh and are not botanically related to sweet potatoes at all. The reason I am on this hunt is because my daughter has so many food allergies she is on a special medical liquid diet. Yams are listed as being the least allergic vegetable, sweet potatoes are second, but she can't eat sweet potatoes, but it has been her mildest reaction. So I am trying to find yams! We have had the most success with the offbeat foods believe it or not. The things we do for our little kiddos :) I'll look for info on Carribean markets!

          1 Reply
          1. re: jesstx

            Bless your hearts! Twenty-plus years ago I was allergic to all foods (by scratch test and by challenge) except white rice. Here's hoping the allergist you're working with will be able to do as much for you as the one who helped and guided me. There can be a positive outcome. This many years later, I can eat most everything. My allergies were the result of receiving three units of blood-of-strangers during a surgery. I hope the light at the end of the tunnel shines brightly for you guys, and that your daughter soon comes out into the sunshine! It can happen.

          2. I have seen them at oriental markets in season, but I don't know about this time of year.

            1 Reply
            1. re: irodguy

              Asia World has some different varieties of yams, but not the huge African ones I don't think.

            2. I know I saw them at a Fiesta Marketplace in Arlington, so perhaps you could try the other Fiestas?? Good luck!

              1. I think the terms "yam" and "sweet potato" tend to be used interchangeably. Koreans and Japanese eat what I believe is yam with the white flesh. It's often cooked over special coals. The Japanese also make noodles out of the yam flour. They are called Shirataki noodles. I'm going to guess your daughter probably has a gluten allergy as well. I think the Shirataki noodles are just yams and tofu. You can probably find the yams at an Asian store. Even the Vietnamese eat yams. I believe the biggest produce section at an Asian grocer is Super H Mart in Carrollton. Every once in a while Central Market carries seasonal yams. I've never really inspected them to see whether they really are "yams."

                I don't know what your daughter can eat, but Babycakes in NYC was one of the first to pioneer gluten free desserts. If you do a search for their recipes, some great stuff will pop up. I hope the doctors can help her. Don't be shy about asking us where you can find products. Good luck.

                1. Thanks so much everyone! After reading more about the real yam, I am pretty sure I do not want the african variety-
                  Africa (from Wikipedia)
                  "Yams of African species must be cooked to be safely eaten, because various natural substances in raw yams can cause illness if consumed. (Excessive skin contact with uncooked yam fluids can cause the skin to itch. If this occurs, a quick cold bath will stop the itching.) Preparing these species is a time-consuming process, involving several minutes of pounding, leaching, and boiling to remove the toxins.[citation needed] The most common cooking method in Western and Central Africa is "pounded yam".
                  Yams may be served fried, boiled or pounded into a fufu dough form."

                  Yikes! lol... I have however found a carribean variety of sweet potato called Boniato Root which seems different enough botanically to try! Thanks again for all your help, I am going to have to check out some of these markets!

                  1. I just also wanted to say, thanks for all the well wishes for my daughter! We are so thankful to live in Dallas with great docs and great medical care and all these options! God Bless!