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Satsumaimo Amani Recipe

Satsumaimo Amani is sweet potato cooked in sweet syrup.  It is a great small side dish or snack. Satsumaimo Amani is not something you eat at restaurants, but it is often made at home in the fall.

Satsumaimo, Japanese sweet potatoes, are in season in fall and winter, so Satsumaimo is the taste of fall in Japan.  They are purple outside and yellow inside, dense and sweet, different from western yams which are usually orange inside.  Because of the sweet taste, Satsumaimo is used in many desserts, like simple baked potatoes or more complicated sweet potato cakes.  Satsumaimo are used for savory dishes too, such as using them in Tempura or adding to Miso Soup.  The sweetness of the potatoes and salty seasonings complement each other very well.

Satsumaimo Amani is quite sweet but it is still a part of a meal, not really a dessert.  It doesn’t exactly go with Steamed Rice, but rather eaten to refresh the palate between salty dishes.

There are more stores in the US carrying Satsumaimo today.  If you find them, especially skinnier ones, make this dish!  It’s a great flavor and a little different from Japanese food you already know.

Satsumaimo Amani Recipe


  • 400g Satsumaimo (Japanese sweet potatoes), about 3 small potatoes
  • 1 1/2 cup (300ml) water
  • 3 Tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt


  1. Cut Satsumaimo into 1" (2cm) thick rounds. Soak in water for 5 minutes.
  2. In a pot put Satsumaimo and add water to cover the potatoes. Let the water boil and strain right away.
  3. Put the 1 1/2 cup water, sugar and salt in a pot and stir, then add potatoes back. At medium heat cook until the sauce boils, turn the heat down to low, cover with parchment paper, and cook about 20 minutes.
  4. Cool leaving potatoes in syrup.

Satsumaimo Amani Recipe

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