Yam and Nut Kebabs

Serves: 4
Total Calories: 875


1 pound yam or sweet potatoes (enought to make 1 cup puree) see note
1/4 cup flour, chickpea (besan) or whole-wheat flour
2 cups nuts, mixed, coarsely chopped, including cashews, pistachios, and almonds, and / or sunflower seeds
1 tablespoon cream, heavy, or sour cream
1 teaspoon lemon juice, fresh, or more to taste
1/2 cup raisins, golden, finely chopped
1/3 cup cilantro, chopped fresh
1 teaspoon white pepper, ground fresh
1/2 teaspoon Quick Garam Masala (see recipe under "Rub It In") or ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon cardamon, ground
1/2 teaspoon salt, or more to taste
3 tablespoons butter, unsalted, melted
pita bread, Naan, or lavash
lemon wedges
onion, sliced
cucumber, sliced
tomato, sliced
chile peppers, sliced


1. If using the grill to cook the yams, set it up for indirect grilling, placing a drip pan in the center, and preheat to medium-high. If using the oven, preheat it to 400°F.

2. Grill (covered) or roast the yams until soft, about 40 minutes. Transfer to a plate and let cool. Peel the yams, then mash in a large bowl with a potato masher, fork, or pestle. (Don’t purée in a food processor, or the mixture will become gummy.)

3. Cook the chickpea flour in a dry skillet over medium heat until lightly toasted and fragrant, about 2 minutes. Stir the flour into the yams. Add the mixed nuts to the skillet and cook, stirring, over medium heat until lightly toasted and fragrant, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir the nuts into the yams. Stir in the cream, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, the raisins, cilantro, pepper, garam marsala, cardamom, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt or lemon juice as necessary the mixture should be highly seasoned. You can form the kebabs now, but the mixture will be easier to work with if you refrigerate it, covered, for about 3 hours. You can make the mixture the day before and chill overnight if desired.

4. Oil 4 long, flat metal skewers. Divide the yam mixture into 4 equal portions. Lightly wet your hands with cold water and mold one portion onto a skewer to make a sausage shape 9 to 10 inches long and 1 inch in diameter. Continue making kebabs until the yam mixture is used up. If making up the kebabs ahead of time, lay them on oiled baking sheets and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until ready to cook.

5. If desired, set up the grill for grateless grilling. Preheat the grill to high.

6. When ready to cook, lightly brush each kebab with melted butter and arrange them on the grill as described in the grateless method or oil the grill grate and arrange them on the hot grate. Grill, turning once or twice, until lightly browned on all sides, about 8 minutes in all. Brush with butter again.

7. Use a piece of naan, pita bread, or lavash as a pot holder and unmold the kebabs onto serving plates or a platter. Serve with lemon wedges for squeezing and a platter of sliced onions, cucumbers, tomatoes, and chile peppers.

Serves 4

Note: The preferable yam used here is a true yam, a starchy tuber with minimal sweetness. Look for true yams at Hispanic or Caribbean markets. I’ve also made the dish with boniatos (white-fleshed Caribbean sweet potatoes, which taste like roasted chestnuts) and, of course, American sweet potatoes.

Nutritional Facts:

Serves: 4
Total Calories: 875
Calories from Fat: 403

This Yam and Nut Kebabs recipe is from the The Barbecue Bible Cookbook. Download this Cookbook today.

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