Ube Basque Cakes
These tender and flaky mini cakes created by the dynamic duo of Timothy Flores and Genie Kwon at Kasama, a modern Filipino bakery and restaurant in Chicago, highlight the cultural phenomenon of ube, a purple tuber native to the Philippines. To make the cakes, Kwon uses a technique for shaping the batter into rounds rather than piping the batter into a baking vessel as sometimes done for traditional Gâteau Basque, making it easier to make lots of the mini Basque cakes. "[Making] flat discs is more efficient and ergonomic," she notes. "It might not make much of a difference when you are making a dozen, but when you're making hundreds, it is a game changer." The buttery cakes are filled with a creamy and mildly sweet ube pastry cream and tart huckleberries, and are finished with a sprinkling of powdered sugar. (At Kasama, the shape of the powdered sugar is in the shape of the sun design from the flag of the Philippines). If you can't source fresh ube, store-bought ube jam (ube halaya) can be used instead.