Loco for Coco
Stateside, peanut butter has a stranglehold.
But as you head east, the ubiquitous spread becomes less so. Nobody's clamoring for a PB&J in Paris, and by the time you reach Southeast Asia, the spread of choice is coconut jam.
Known also as kaya, srikaya and sangkhaya, depending on whether you're in Singapore, Indonesia or Thailand, coconut jam is made by slow-cooking together coconut cream, egg yolks and sugar until the mixture reaches a spreadable consistency.
The version made here in San Francisco by Hey Boo Jams (9 ounces for $11) is a deep golden yellow, owing to the use of saffron-hued, cage-free eggs; it resembles lemon curd both in appearance and in smooth, silky texture.
Made by Cristina Widjaja, who grew up in Indonesia and left a career in tech to spread the gospel of coconut jam, the spread is traditionally slathered on toast and paired with a cup of black coffee.
But we can imagine myriad other uses: spooned onto sticky rice, lavished onto waffles or drizzled onto banana ice cream, for example.
Sorry, peanut butter, but you've met your match.
Hey Boo Coconut Jam, available at Rainbow Grocery, 1745 Folsom St. (at Folsom St.), 415-863-0620 or rainbow.coop; Falletti Foods, 308 Broderick St. (at Oak St.), 415-626-4400 or fallettifoods.com; or heyboojams.com
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