Here's my recipe for a dish called Daigaku Imo in Japanese which literally translates as "university potato". There are various stories about why caramelised sweet potatoes became associated with a university - some say the dish was invented by a student struggling to pay his fees, others that the dish was first popularised by an outlet selling its wares to students at the nation's #1 learning centre, Tokyo University.
My guess is that these potatoes appealed to students because they are a sweet, quickly made street food that suited the student lifestyle of food on the go.
Yakiimo or roasted sweet potato was one of Japan's original street foods which were made in carts with charcoal burners set up by the roadside. They are, sadly, a rarity these days but I hope this recipe will give you a taste of those days gone by.
The key to this dish is to cook the sweet potatoes until they almost soft before you deep fry them. Some people insist that the coating has to be made with honey but I use brown sugar instead and finish with a sprinkle of black sesame.
Get your thinking cap on! Kurumi XXXX.
Why not pair this dish with another Japanese recipe to make a substantial meal? How about browsing my Miso Minced Pork in Lettuce Wraps as a main with Daigaku Imo as a side?