In the last few months, trend-watching bloggers have breathlessly declared ube, the sweet purple yam, to be “the new most Instagrammable food,” “the current flavor of the moment,” “Filipino America’s breakout food” and, reassuringly, “more than just a hipster trend.”
That’s not pure hyperbole. A search for “#ube” on Instagram yields almost 158,000 posts showing toothsome-looking images of just about everything you can imagine: cupcakes, cheesecakes, cookies, doughnuts, waffles, pancakes, lattes, rainbow-sprinkle-topped milkshakes and so much ice cream in shades of pale lavender, bruise-y plum, vivid violet and deep aubergine.
So what, aside from its lovely hue, should you know about ube? Here are a few things: