This Yam smells and tastes weird

Hello Dopers,

We just cooked a yam that has been laying in my kitchen for about a week. We’re not quite sure what kind of yam (or sweet potato?) it is, but it had purplish skin but yellowish-whitish insides. It was baked in the oven, wrapped in foil with nothing added, and when it came out of the oven it had an incredibly intense taste and smell that can only be described as floral fruity cleaning solution. The smell is very familiar but we can’t quite figure out what it reminds us of.

Now, I smelled things around the house and there is nothing else in the house that smells anything like this, and I don’t really know how to describe it better. It is certainly not expected nor desired, but is it safe? I mean we’ve eaten our share of yams and sweet potatoes baked in exactly this fashion and this was entirely unexpected (and pretty much unpalatable, so we only ate a bite each). What the hell? Anybody have any idea what’s going on? Some sort of a fruity smelling mold? Contaminant? Just a weird yam species that we’re not familiar with? Are we going to die from this? :eek:

Thank you for your guesses,

Groman and Friends

Sounds like a Japanese sweet potato. I got one from the local market (never had them before) and also found it weirdly perfume-y sweet. Not really my taste. Maybe we both got freaky ones?


This claims that they are “slightly sweet”, but I found it like eating something flavored with shampoo!

The perfect complement to the scientific study whale meat the Japanese eat. Maybe this is why Japanese are always writing ad copy like this. Tastes of fruity flowers bathe sun happy fun fun mouth dance. In English purple sweet potato. Flowery taste with bathwater soap aftertaste.

Yep. I’m pretty sure that’s the “yam”. I think I am going to request Whole Foods to add a “Warning! Tastes like potpourri” signs :smiley:

Being Canadian, I thought that American and British sweet things were ridiculously oversweetened until I tried some Japanese fare. Out of curiosity once, I got a package of little cakes that were made of a sort of puffed rice on the outside, and had red bean paste in the middle. That bean paste was so sweet I could only finish half the thing. I hear that they also sweeten their mayonnaise.

You will eat it and you will like it! I mean… yes, they do. Japanese mayonnaise tastes similar to American Miracle Whip.