Yes, Y is for Yam, a name that's been claimed by both Amorphophallus (Suran) and Dioscorea (Sweet potatoes), depending on the place on the globe :). Since where i live, Dioscorea is easily available and is called Yam, i am using this in my recipe (was that a disclaimer?). Now, i do have my thoughts on what we calls Yams here in the US. These are also referred to as sweet potatoes, but to my palette, they are not nearly as sweet and starchy as the desi shakarkand (sweet potatoes)-and i am thrilled about it, because that makes them a perfect replacement for the Amorphophallus (the stuff we call Yam in India)! Today, i am pairing the yams with black-beans, and folks, let it be known, i am thrilled with the outcome :)).
The plus is that if get lazy while making this dish, you'll end up with something good half-way through still (ahem, that was kind of a note to self), he he ;). Feel free to try this with raw plantain, cassava or any starchy vegetables/tubers etc., and yes, that includes potatoes :)). Black beans may be replaced by lobias, fava beans, rajma/kidney beans or chana/garbanzos. And this dish is for the A-Z e-potluck at Nupur's place :).
So, here's the how-to:
- 1 cup cubed yams
- 1 cup black beans
- 5-6 mild green chillies-crushed/equivalent amount of bell peppers-chopped (optional, i used them and love them)
- 1 onion (finely sliced)
- A 2" (atleast) piece of ginger (julienned)
- 1 big, ripe tomato (chopped)
- 1/4 tsp. each shah-jeera (black-cumin) and dhaniya (coriander seeds)
- Turmeric (very little, as a spice) and red chilli powder (if you are not using green chillies or settle for bell-peppers)
- Salt to taste
- Amchoor/lime juice to taste (if you like it a lil' tangy)
- 1 tsp. oil/melted ghee
- A pinch of garam masala
- Kasuri methi or Chopped Cilantro (for garnish and aroma)
What next? From here, either we choose to cook the black beans and yams together or cook yams for 5 more minutes, add salt to taste, add some cilantro and have it with parantha or chapati or even roll yourself a nice burrito with this sabzi and cooked black beans plus some cheese-or may be a quesadilla :). I did the former (although many a time, i settle for the latter). To do that, we just add the cooked yams to the pressure cooked black beans and simmer on low heat till the gravy thickens. Lets garnish this with cilantro and enjoy! The chunky, cubed, bordering on sweet yams in the luscious dark black beans gravy is just bliss! I had this combo for dinner with chapati and the my lunch next day was a burrito from boiled beans and cooked yams! Or do it like they do here in one Pita place close to where i work: Black beans (and lets add the yams too) and melted cheese with some salad in the pita-to make what they call as a bean wowshi!
There's more yams for you here :). Enjoy the yummy yams, your way!