For the umpteenth time, I'm writing about ube, a variety of yam that's naturally colored purple. The root vegetable is used in the Philippines as an ingredient in sweet snacks and desserts. I have yet to see it added to savory dishes though.
It was a pleasant surprise to find it in the Asian grocery store and even more surprising is the fact that it is grown right here in the USA. I grabbed a few pieces, maybe a little more than half a pound, just to confirm if it is the same Philippine variety. And indeed it is! Same texture and flavor. I'll get more if the store still has them and will pre-cook then freeze them for future use. I can never have too much ube in the freezer.
I steamed the ube until tender, mashed them until creamy, and made ube jam using half-and-half instead of coconut milk and sweetened condensed milk. I also significantly reduced the amount of sugar and made it spreadable like fruit butter so I can enjoy it on toasted sliced challah or brioche.
Ube Jam or Butter
2 cups mashed precooked ube
1½ cups half and half
½ cup sugar
½ teaspoon sea salt
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, thinly sliced
- Place ingredients except butter in a nonstick wok or saucepan. Cook on medium heat while constantly stirring for 30 - 45 minutes or until mixture has thickened and slightly runny. Turn heat off and add in butter. Stir until butter is fully incorporated.
- Transfer into a jar. Let cool completely before putting the lid on. The jam will keep for 2 weeks in the refrigerator.
Philippine pan de ube