Heavenly Asian-Style Peaches and Cream
Inspired by shaved-ice desserts of the Far East, it’s a Brazen take on a classic combination.
Photo by Leah Lizarondo
Wonder Woman. That’s who your friends will think you are after you make this mind-bending dessert.
This delicious treat takes a cue from shaved-ice desserts popular in Asia. In Singapore, it’s called an Ice Kacang (catch-ang). In Malaysia, it’s Gula Melaka. In Thailand, it’s Nam Kang Sai. In Japan, it’s Kakigori. And in the Philippines, it’s Halo-Halo.
They all have variations in execution, but the basic idea is the same: shaved ice, flavoring, possibly some milk, some fixings like jelly, tapioca, fruit, and even sweet beans and corn — all topped with a glorious scoop of ice cream.
Layers of goodness.
True pros know to mix it all up into one cool mess and eat it with a spoon. The best part is drinking the sweet, icy milk at the end. It’s like cereal milk on speed.
Here is a photo of the Filipino Halo-Halo.
Yum. I grew up with this. The combination also traditionally includes a slice of custard, and the ice cream is usually purple yam, a starchy root vegetable that is somewhat reminiscent of a sweet potato. It’s hard to imagine how all the flavors come together before you try it, but it’s magical.
Anthony Bourdain may have said it best. From Serious Eats:
“After trying halo-halo on an episode of ‘Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown’ in Los Angeles, [Bourdain] called it ‘oddly beautiful,’ continuing, ‘it makes no goddamn sense at all.’”
It’s tough to recreate Halo-Halo or any of the shaved-ice desserts because they often call for ingredients that are not easy to come by in the United States. Fear not, my friends, because Brazen Kitchen will find a way! Here is an iteration that’s the product of a perfect fusion. It’s Peaches and Cream in a totally unexpected way.
Here are the layers:
- Shaved ice
- Peach cashew or coconut cream with ginger
- Basil and mint syrup
- Coconut or vanilla ice cream
Peaches. Ginger. Coconut. Basil. Mint. Ice cream. BOOM.
Well hello, superhero.
It might look a little odd when you serve it, but tasting is believing. It’s phenomenal. Phe. No. Me. Nal.
Each mouthful will have fresh, sweet, juicy peach bathed in icy, sweet cream flavored with basil and mint. And, if you want, it can all end with the crunch of Rice Krispies. When all is said and done, you still have — in your glass — cool, peachy basil mint milk waiting for you to slurp up to the last satisfying drop.
Heaven. Pure heaven.
Ginger Peach Cashew/Coconut Cream
- 1 peach, pitted
- ½ cup cashew cream or coconut cream*
- ¼ cup water
- 1 inch knob ginger, peeled
- 2 T maple syrup
Blend everything until smooth.
*Use the cashew cream from this recipe or make coconut cream by placing a can of full-fat coconut milk in the fridge overnight and scooping out the separated solid coconut cream. Do not include the liquid. Use it for this recipe instead.
Basil Mint Syrup
- ⅓ cup maple syrup
- 3 T water
- 12 leaves basil
- 12 leaves mint
Blend everything until smooth.
1. Place some cubed peaches in the bottom of a glass.
2. Top with shaved ice. Pack the ice in.
3. Pour in some ginger peach cream.
4. Place a few more peaches.
5. Top with a scoop of ice cream — coconut or vanilla.
6. Drizzle about a tablespoon or so of basil mint syrup.
7. Top with Rice Krispies or corn flakes (optional).
Mix it all up into a slush.