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Ube

Boiled ube

Ube is a very popular flavor in the Philippines. A root crop that is used mainly in sweet preparations, it is a favorite flavor of ice cream and for cakes and pastries. It is also added to halo-halo.

Boiled ube

Boiled ube

The plant that bears ube has the scientific name Dioscorea alata. It has heart-shaped leaves.

Ube is known in English as purple yam. On the island of Hawaii, it is known as uhi.

The Okinawan purple yam has the scientific name Ipomoea batatas cv. Ayamurasaki. This Japanese plant can be more accurately referred to as a purple-fleshed sweet potato, rather than a yam. Its Japanese name is beni-imo.

In the Philippines, there is a relative of ube called tuge. Its scientific name is Dioscorea esculenta and it’s been referred to in English as the lesser yam.

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