Sweet Potato Apple Cake ($9) is a new dessert on Cha-An's winter menu. It's sort of a pie-meets-tarte tatin, elegant and quiet. A puff pastry square crust at the top sits over layers of caramelized apples and creamy whipped sweet potato puree at the base. The warm apples are softly scented with cinnamon and caramel, two flavors accented in the scoop of caramel nut ice cream—a housemade creation studded with crushed walnuts and broken caramel shards. Their signature toasted sesame seed tuile tops off the creation; still, it's perhaps one of the most un-Japanese desserts Cha-An has featured in quite awhile.
About the author: Originally from Honolulu, Kathy YL Chan blogs at Kathy YL Chan, where she chronicles her eats and travels adventures between Hawai'i, New York and beyond. She firmly believes that there is always room for dessert.