Yams in Spun Syrup

1 lb (500 g) Chinese yams (or sweet potatoes)
3 cups (750 ml) vegetable oil for deep-frying; uses about 2 1/2 oz (75 ml)
5/8 cup (150 g) sugar


  1. Wash, peel and roll-cut the yams into pieces. Soak in boiling hot water and remove immediately.
  2. Heat the oil in a wok over medium heat to about 250oF(120oC), or until small bubbles appear around a piece of green leaf tossed into the oil. Add the yams and deep-fry until cooked or brown.
  3. Pour all but 2 tbsp of the oil out of the wok. Turn the heat to low and add the sugar, stirring constantly until it dissolves. Cook until the syrup caramelises and turns light brown. Immediately add the yams and remove wok from the heat. Quickly toss the yam pieces so they are well-coated with the syrup, which will spin a thread. Place on a plate and serve immediately. Dip each piece in cold water to cool it enough to eat.

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