two cups of hawaiian shave ice with plastic spoons

What is Hawaiian Shave Ice?

Origin: Hawaii

Type: Shaved Ice Dessert

Main Flavours: Fruit Syrups, Sweetened Condensed Milk

About Hawaiian Shave Ice

Shave Ice is a typical Hawaiian crushed ice dessert, known for its refreshing and tropical flavours. Unlike snow cones in the US, shave ice is finely shaved, creating a soft, snow-like texture that absorbs the flavorful syrups poured over it. The most popular flavours are Hawaiian fruits that are hard to get hold of outside of Hawaii, but can be substituted for more common fruits like pineapple, guava and coconut.

See below for our recipe

What Zsófi Says About Shave Ice

Perhaps the best-known out of this list, Hawaii’s Shave Ice is a soft and fluffy ice dessert topped with fruit-based syrup. As amazing as this sounds, for Shave Ice you need to be prepared – well, at least with a spoon and a straw. You start with a spoon, but, as the ice is so thinly and carefully shaved, it starts melting quickly. Once you’ve eaten all you can with your dignity still intact and your shirt still clean, you will have to switch to the straw to finish up your dessert. A real two-in-one.

Hawaiian fruit flavours are also quite special; however, some are only available in Hawaii (so who wants to get tickets?). There, you can top your Shave Ice with lychee, passionfruit, pickled mango, and even wet lemon peel. Once you’ve picked your syrup, you can even go a bit crazy and add more toppings if you’d like, such as fruit, sweet red beans, or an extra scoop of ice cream.

Read Zsófi’s full article on shaved ice desserts

Shave Ice Recipe

Shave Ice Ingredients

  • Shaved ice (the best shaved ice comes from a shaved ice machine, but if you don’t have one at home you can put ice in a strong blender or put it in a bag and smash it with a rolling pin)
  • Fruit syrups (the flavours that shave ice is most typically made with that you can also find outside of Hawaii are pineapple, coconut or guava)

Shave Ice Instructions

Make the crushed ice using your chosen method. If it’s a hot day, keep it in the fridge whilst you prepare your other ingredients, or prepare the other ingredients first (don’t put it back into the freezer because it will freeze back into one big lump!).

Pack the shave ice into a cone or cup and generously pour over your choice of fruit syrups. Serve immediately and enjoy!

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