Ishu Didi

There is some confusion about the difference between yams and sweet potatoes. Many people think they are the same but they are not. The yam is brown on the outside and has a slightly oily texture, while the sweet potato is pink on the outside and its texture is dry and fluffy.

In West Africa, particularly Nigeria, yams are almost the staple diet of the population.

Ishu Didi (ee-shoo dee-dee) is simply yams fried in butter. It makes a welcome change from potatoes, served with grilled fish or meat.

1 large yam (approximately

1 lb.), peeled and cut into

2-inch slices

1 teaspoon salt

2 oz. butter

1 small onion, finely chopped { teaspoon black pepper

Place the yam slices in a large saucepan. Just cover with water and add

½ teaspoon of salt. Bring to the boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to moderate and continue cooking the yam slices for

15 minutes or until they are nearly but not quite cooked. Drain the yam slices in a colander and set aside.

In a large frying-pan, melt the butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the onion and fry, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes or until it is soft and translucent but not brown. Add the yam slices, sprinkle with the remaining salt and the pepper and cook them, turning them carefully, for 5 to 6 minutes or until they are golden brown and crisp on both sides.

Remove the pan from the heat and serve immediately.


Isinglass is prepared from the swimming bladder or sound of several fish, especially sturgeon. It is a pure and almost tasteless form of gelatine. Commercially, isinglass is used to clarify beer and wine. It is also sometimes used instead of gelatine in jellies , jams and confectionery.

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