I've decided to start a Photo Recipe "Book" for my kids (and whomever else wants to read). My mom, grandmother and great-grandmother all wrote on paper... scrap paper, stationery, 3x5 and 4x6 cards are tucked into my memento boxes. While I love seeing my family's handwriting, I would have loved to have seen the actual dishes being made.
I encourage everyone to consider doing the same thing. Grab the camera and snap pics of each step. Put measurements if there are any (for those of us who cook a lot, there are rarely measurements, but that's a great part of this documentation), explaining what to do... and have fun!
So, here is my first Photo Recipe; Candied Yams.
1 pound of butter, melted.
1 box of dark brown sugar. Stir.
I started with about 8 yams and ended up doing 2 batches.
They do need to be peeled and then cut into chunks about 2 inches or so.
Yams shrink as they cook, so filled almost to top of 3 inch tall large pan is fine.
Add another 1 pound of butter.
Add another 1/2 box (or so) of dark brown sugar.
Stir to coat the raw yams.
DO NOT STIR AGAIN!
If you stir as it cooks, it will break up the yams and make them mashed yams. Of course, if that's your goal, stir away.
Simmer on low. Do NOT put a lid/cover on the pan.
About 45 minutes into it. You can see the harder/raw ones on top. Don't stir, but you can press the raw ones down into the butter-sugar mix.
About 1 1/2 hours into simmering.
Right about 2 hours, simmered on low the whole time. Every once in awhile, I would gently push the raw/harder yams down into the simmer.
After the yams are removed from the pan, I let the butter-sugar mix simmer (on medium) for 30 minutes or so to caramelize (even more!) the drizzle.
I don't decorate them any more than this. Some people like marshmallows on their yams; I keep it simple and sweet. With gobs of fat. I like keeping the drizzle on the side if people want to add more to their potatoes.
When my mom gave me this recipe, she said she sometimes added other tastes. She's added orange marmelade and apricot brandy... can't remember what else. You can certainly customize the recipe to your family's tastes. Raisins, cranberries, slices of candied citrus peels? Ideas off the top of my head.
Happy Thanksgiving and enjoy!