[caption id="attachment_709" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Yam Ring"][/caption]
I had this craving for Yam all of a sudden and so I decided to make my all time favourite yam dish, the Yam Ring or Fatt Put (in Cantonese). There was a time wuite some time ago when I was so crazy about the Yam Ring, I'd have it almost once a week. At the time though, I didn't bother trying to make it myself; I just ordered it from the Chinese Vegetarian Shop in my neighbourhood: it'd usually last a couple of days.
In case you don't know, a Yam Ring is a deep fried ring of yam (steamed, mashed and formed into a ring first) on a bed of fried vermicelli noodles and filled with a stir-fry of vegetables with gravy.
I soon discovered (by way of clothes that don't fit) that eating all that fried Yam probably wasn't the best thing for my diet. Actually, Yam in itself is low in saturated fats and has a high content of, among other things, dietary fibre and pottasium. But deep frying could make even a vitamin pill unhealthy!
So though I craved the Yam Ring, I decided on baking it and not frying it. I realised of course that deep frying lent the Fatt put some of its taste; baking it may make the yam a tad dry. But I was sure that a baked ring could with the right amount of moisture could be as delicious.
The result? Delicious.
Of course, I'd be lying if I said the baked ring tasted the same as the fried one: kinda like how deep fried french fries taste different from baked ones. Still tasty but grease-less (that's where the flavour lies, right?). But, it's also guilt-less and I'd rather enjoy my baked Yam with no guilt than run an extra hour in the gym tomorrow. Uggggh.
Anyway, after steaming the yam, mash it and add seasoning: five spice powder, salt and pepper and about 1 tbsp oil. Refrigerate for about 30 mins at least. Shape into ring. Bake till golden-ish.
For the filling, I chopped red peppers, carrots, asparagus, mushrooms, tofu, vegetarian ham and chestnuts and added some roasted but not salted cashews, cooked in a sauce of vege oyster sauce and vege stock. Make sure you have enough sauce so that can soak into the base of the ring.
Lay ring on a bed of fried vermicelli, spoon filling into ring and ard if you want. I find the filling in the ring is sometimes insufficient and you can end up with more yam and not enough filling.
You won't need another side dish with the Yam Ring as its loaded with veges already.