Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Filipino Food: Ube Ice Cream

An empty jar of the purple stuff. Oh, yeah...
According to all my sources (family, Filipino friends, cookbooks, the internet) ube is a sweet purple yam that is grown in the Philippines. I personally have never seen it. And I've only purchased ube as a spread by the jar, which has a dark and dramatic purple hue. Being the obedient Filipino child that I was, I never questioned where the color came from, and I currently lack the desire to research it further. Ignorance is bliss--and so is ube.

I've prepared ube three ways: 1. as small sponge cakes called puto, 2. as a thick, sticky paste served up in slabs (which tastes better than it sounds), and 3. as ice cream. Guess which way is my favorite?

I scream! You scream! We all scream for ube ice cream!

The best way to make ube ice cream is to use a recipe for coconut ice cream and add ube to it. I've tried making it with a vanilla ice cream recipe and the ube needed something to balance it. Coconut provides the perfect yin to ube's yang.