Monday, May 5, 2014

11 Must-Try Shaved Ice Around the World

Summer is just as brutal as icy cold winter: whenever you walk outside you would feel like you're being melted by hot summer air and all you want to eat is ice cream or popsicles. But have you ever considered shaved ice as another summer must eat?

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Shaved ice is just a generic name for a bunch of ice-based dessert. It's believed that the Roman Emperor Nero invented this dessert: record shows he sent slaves to nearby mountains to collect ice then flavored the retrieved ice with a honey and fruits mixture. Nowadays shaved ice is generally made of fine shavings of ice or crushed ice top with various sweet condiments of syrups. This simple frozen treat is enjoyed by everyone around the world, but every culture has its own form and variation. 


Snow Cones & Sno-ball - America

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Perhaps the simplest shaved ice among the others, snow cones are often flavored with just fruit syrups. Some regional variations would top the ice with a fruit-cream mixture (below) or marshmallow cream.

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Piragua - Puerto Rico

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Made in pyramid shapes, piraguas are sold by street vendors in Puerto Rican neighborhoods, especially in New York and Philadelphia.


Baobing/Chhoah-peng - China, Taiwan

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Toppings generally include fresh fruits, syrup, condensed milk, grass jelly, sweetened beans, and glutinous rice balls. Some shops in Taiwan even made a savory twist on shaved ice. The owners use seafood ingredients as toppings and flavor everything with shrimp paste. The picture below is just one of their exotic examples.

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Kakigori - Japan

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The regular kakigori is usually flavored with plain or fruit flavored syrups. But a lot of shops in Japan sell different varieties of kakigori in the summer, like strawberry and green tea.


Patbingsu - Korea

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Recently ranked by BuzzFeed as one of the top summer frozen treats to try, this Korean version of shaved ice features sweetened red beans and canned fruits as main ingredients. Believe or not, the starting price in NYC is $12 at Korean bakeries. Would you spend $12 just to try ice, beans and fruits?


Halo-halo - Philippine

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You would recognize Halo-halo by its bright colors! Typical ingredients include ube (purple yam), taro/ube ice cream, nata jelly, red beans and flan. A Quiet Nerdy Thing provides a good ingredients diagram here.


Ais Kacang / ABC - Malaysia, Singapore

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In the beginning, red beans were the only topping for ABC. Now you would often see basil seeds, corn, condensed milk on every ABC.


Nam Kang Sai - Thailand

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The one thing that differentiates Nam Kang Sai from other Asian shaved ice is that the ice is always on top of the toppings.


Chuski - India

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Ice on a stick! A low-cost summer treat in India, chuski is similar to regular snow cones except it can also be flavored with local flavors like rose and khus, then topped with condensed milk.


Raspados - Mexico, Colombia, Panama, Venezuela

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These frozen treats are often topped with condensed milk and various fruit flavors.


Granizados - Costa Rica

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When they have ice cream on the top, granizados are called "churchillls" instead.


Do you have other recommendation? Comment below and share with us!

1 comments:

Inquisitive Eating Kay said...

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