Ube jam from Special food, its impact on the body.
The Ube jam is a jam that surely a few of you have already tasted. Also because it is made with an unusual ingredient, not very common or consumed in Italy: the purple potato. The purple color, obviously, is not given by a dye but is naturally present in this tuber. It is caused by the presence of anthocyanins, the same antioxidants that are found in eggplant for example. They generate a beneficial impact on the body by providing prevention against heart diseases and by counteracting the action of free radicals.
As for the flavor, the purple potato resembles the sweet potato but also has a hint of chestnut. The pulp is sometimes soft or floury. It is configured as an unusual ingredient, but suitable for confectionery preparations, also because it is capable of offering a lot on the visual level. The purple color, in fact, impacts in a determined way from this point of view. As for Ube jam, it is consumed like any other jam, therefore to make sweets, or to be spread on the occasion of breakfast and snack.
The Many Qualities of Coconut Milk and its Nutritional Properties
Coconut milk is one of the most important ingredients in Ube jam. Its role is twofold: on the one hand to make the mixture smoother (less dense) and on the other to give it an additional “tropical” scent, so that it can be different than normal jams. Incidentally, coconut milk should not be confused with coconut water. Milk is obtained from the pressed and squeezed pulp added with water; coconut water is the liquid that is naturally present inside the coconut.
Coconut milk has some important properties, as well as a particular taste. For example, it is rich in vitamins and minerals, the reference is to vitamin C, E, and many others from group B. It also contains iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and above all potassium. Coconut milk is also rich in antioxidants, on whose merits I have focused on the previous paragraphs. Another particular feature is the high concentration of lauric acid, a fatty acid which, as important studies show, helps prevent heart disease. Coconut milk is placed in a pot and cooked together with the other ingredients, including the aforementioned purple potato (previously grated).
The Peculiarities of Violet Sugar Crystals and Their Aesthetic Impact
An unusual ingredient in this Ube jam is purple sugar crystals. Their purpose is essentially decorative (as well as the sweetener), in fact, they give the compound a marked brilliance and a very particular texture. The sugar crystals are obtained, very trivially, by “cooking” a solution of water and sugar that has reached the maximum of its saturation. Only when the sugar is at the limit of solvency will it turn into crystal, which will then be further “crumbled”.
Sugar crystals are typically sold in various colors. Obviously, the dye is applied, which must be absolutely natural. For this recipe I recommend the purple crystals in order to further enrich the visual impact, adding an effect reminiscent of precious materials, and which is rarely found in other jams or confectionery preparations.
Here is the recipe for UBE Jam:
Ingredients for 3 jars:
450 g purple potatoes;
400 ml. coconut milk
100 g icing sugar;
20 g of purple sugar crystals;
water with lemon and vinegar;
1 tablespoon of coconut oil
a pinch of salt;
Rum to taste.
For the preparation of Ube jam, start by washing the potatoes and adding them to the water mixed with lemon or vinegar. The latter is important as there is a risk of oxidation on contact with the air. Peel the potatoes and grate them. Add the coconut milk, the grated purple potatoes, the sugars, and the salt in a large pot, turn on the heat over high heat. Bring to the boiling state by mixing almost continuously. Lower the heat to a medium level and then to a low level, continuing to cook and stir until the mixture has thickened.
When stirring, rub the bottom of the pot with a spatula to prevent the mixture from sticking or burning. If you notice that the boil is excessive, lower the heat further. Continue until the consistency is very soft and it will no longer be necessary to apply the spatula to prevent the mixture from sticking. Typically it takes 30 minutes. With the heat off, pour the coconut oil and continue stirring until the oil has perfectly incorporated into the mixture.
Now pour the rum and mix well until it mixes. Let the mixture cool in the pan a little, then transfer it while still hot to the sterilized jars or containers. Store the jam at room temperature. You can also store it in the refrigerator, but in this case, wait for it to reach room temperature in order to use it (when cold it is difficult to spread it).