We know you’re wondering what on earth ube is, so we’re here to let you know all the details about it. Many get this root vegetable confused with another one known as taro but we hope after you read this that you’ll learn exactly why they’re so different. If there’s one thing that they both have in common is that they’re both very delicious!
Shall we get started? Here’s everything you need to know about ube and more below.
What is Ube?
You might be asking yourself is ube taro? Not at all, Ube (pronounced ooh-beh) is actually very simple but many get it confused with other foods or root vegetables like taro. But that’s okay, because we got it confused when we were younger too! Everyone thought ube was the same thing as taro before at least once right? If you want, read everything you need to know about taro here.
Ube is a tuber vegetable famously known as the purple yam. Ube or purple yam (dioscorea) comes from many South East Asian countries however it’s most popular origin is from the Philippines and parts of New Guinea.
The outer structure or appearance of ube is brown similar to taro root or potatoes but once you cut it open revealing the flesh you’ll realize it’s completely different. Ube’s internal appearance is a vibrant and deep color of purple. The deep purple inside a purple yam should be considered royal purple, there’s just no other purple vegetables like it!
What Does Ube Taste Like?
The taste of ube is like no other. The best way to describe it is that it has a subtle sweetness similar to vanilla with an underlying nutty flavor. Overall, the flavor and taste of ube is very subtle and not overpowering. This makes it the perfect flavor to use for desserts like ube ice cream or soft serve, ube cakes, ube donuts and more!
One of the most popular dishes that ube is used for is a dessert dish known as Halayang ube, a dessert dish very popular in the Philippines. To make this dish, all you need is mashed up ube (purple yam) and sweetened condensed milk (or you can just use another variation of milk and sugar). This dessert dish is soft, delicate and full of subtle sweetness. It can be dense at times but this dessert is a must try if you haven’t tasted it yet!
Other popular uses of ube is in ube milk teas, ube bubble teas, ube cakes, ube muffins and even ube cookies!
Ube Health Benefits
Ube and many other starch rich foods have a lot of great health benefits! Some of which include a great source of antioxidants. Ube includes many different antioxidants but one that is noticeably prominent is vitamin C. For those that don’t know, vitamin C helps with the growth and repair of many tissues in your body. Feeling a bit fatigued, maybe a boost of vitamin C can help with that!
Another health benefit for consuming purple yam (ube) is the regulation of blood sugar levels in your body. It has been known that ube or purple yam has the ability to help control the levels of sugar in your body, thus being a great food to consume for those with type 2 diabetes.
Disclaimer: Like always, consult with a doctor or medical professional to ensure any advice you take from the internet is factual.
Ube vs Taro
There are two very distinct differences between ube and taro: the appearance of the inside flesh and the taste itself.
Starting with the appearance, both ube and taro root have very similar outer appearances. They’re both brown and tube like in structure. However, like we mentioned before, once you cut open the tubers and reveal the inside, you’ll quickly realize they’re very different. Ube is royal purple in color whereas taro is actually pale white with purple specs all around it.
As far as taste goes, one is a lot sweeter than the other. And as you can imagine the sweeter vegetable is definitely ube. Ube is very much like a sweet potato in both taste and texture, it tastes sweet, almost like vanilla and has a very delicate texture to each bite. You can break the cooked ube with a fork very easily! In contrast, taro is much like a subtle nutty flavor more than anything else and it isn’t quite as soft and delicate. Read more about the taste of taro here.
Despite the differences, both vegetables taste very good in their own ways. Especially in ube bubble tea or taro bubble tea!
Will You Eat Something with Ube Flavors in it Now?
If you’ve eaten ube or had some ube flavored desserts, milk teas or pastries let us know! We want to know what you’ve tried already, maybe we haven’t tried it yet, it’s always good to share right? And if you haven’t tried anything yet, may we suggest some things? First and foremost, definitely find yourself a boba place that has ube, there’s nothing like it! And secondly, find a spot that has soft serve ube flavors, there’s just something about ube and dessert that pairs to be the perfect combination.
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