This Filipino purple yam dessert (ube halaya or ube jam) is not only eye-catching, it’s totally delicious!! Mashed purple yam is cooked slowly with butter, evaporated milk and condensed milk which give this colorful dessert such a luscious buttery, creamy and sweet flavor. Great on its own or as topping for halo-halo or as jam for bread or filling for pastries.
I grew up eating this while I lived in the Philippines and then until now, I could never have enough of this amazing dessert!! I know, you may say, “But it’s purple, I don’t eat anything purple!” Well, perhaps it’s time to rethink this way of thinking or eating. When I say it’s loaded with butter, evaporated milk and condensed milk, won’t that change your mind? I know I may be biased but it’s truly yummy and very addictive!
It’s been awhile since I had ube jam so when I found this frozen purple yam pack in the Filipino store in the borough of Queens in New York City, I immediately grabbed a couple. At that point, I had no idea how to make this dessert but I knew there would be a day when I would make this, and lucky you, today is that day!!
While it needs some elbow grease in making this, it’s pretty easy and straightforward and with very few ingredients, you can’t go wrong. All you need is mashed purple yam, butter, evaporated and condensed milk, and a little bit of brown sugar which is totally optional, too. You can find either frozen purple yam (previously cooked) or fresh purple yam at your local Asian store. The fresh yam needs to be steamed or boiled first then mashed before using. It only requires one pan or wok so there’s not much cleaning required afterwards and most of all it’s all done in the stovetop and no baking at all. Easy-peasy!!
So when you find yourself in an Asian store, go to the produce section and look for fresh purple yams or proceed to the frozen section and grab a pack or 2 of the cooked variety. Enjoy!!
Ube Halaya (Purple Yam Dessert rube Jam)
This Filipino purple yam dessert (ube halaya or ube jam) is not only eye-catching, it's totally delicious!! Mashed purple yam is cooked slowly with butter, evaporated milk and condensed milk which give this colorful dessert such a luscious buttery, creamy and sweet flavor. Great on its own or as topping for halo-halo or as jam for bread or filling for pastries.
- 4 tbsp salted butter
- 1 lb (16 oz / 454 g) mashed purple yam, frozen, thawed
- 5 oz (147 ml) can (small) evaporated milk
- 1/2 can condensed milk
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
In a non-stick wok or skillet, in medium heat, melt the butter. Once the butter is melted add the mashed purple yam and stir to mix until well-blended.
Add the evaporated milk, condensed milk and sugar then continue to cook, stirring constantly in low to medium heat, until the mixture forms a whole and cohesive mass, is thick and folds easily when stirred. This may take up to 20 minutes.
Transfer to a greased or buttered mold or llanera. Allow to cool completely then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Enjoy on its own or use as spread or filling for pastries and certainly as topping for halo-halo.