Friday, June 25, 2010

Frozen Treats: Korean Edition (Bing Soo!)

The shopping trip started out as a collection of smoothie ingredients, but as so often happens in Asian supermarkets before breakfast, I quickly ended up with items not really for smoothie making....You see, the fresh fruit got me thinking, what I really wanted wasn't a drink at all, but a frozen fruit salad of epic proportions; what I really wanted was Bing Soo.

Bing Soo (or bingsu, or patbingsu, or paht bing soo, any combination of those really) is a Korean dessert often compared to a snow cone (although I have yet to see any snow cone that comes
even near to the complexity of bing soo). The basic ingredients are shaved ice, milk, sweetened condensed milk, and rice
cake. Depending on personal taste then, one can add fruits, fresh or canned, red beans, syrups, nuts, marshmallows and small candies, and sometimes ice cream. Normally this concoctions are served in big bowls and tower above the table. Bing Soo is essentially my favorite dessert of all time.

To make this bing soo you will need:
  • 2-3 cups of ice
  • 1.5 cups milk
  • 2-3 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk
  • rice cake
  • strawberries
  • bananas
  • canned mandarin oranges
  • red beans (yude azuki)
Cut up all of your fruit in bite size
pieces and strain your oranges. If you have dehydrated rice cake then put some balls/slices/pieces in a microwavable bowl and add water until there is about 1.5" above the cake. Microwave the bowl on high for 3-4 minutes until the cake is gummy; drain and let cool.

Now, be careful, if you have a really intense blender then you can add your ice and milks and blend everything until you have a slushy like mixture, add milk if it starts freezing though. If you don't have a strong enough blender, or if your mix starts freezing, then you run a high chance of burning out your blender's motor. Been there, done that, it sucks, avoid at all costs. Usually, bing soo is made with and ice shaving machine (ice is shaved and milks poured on top). However, if you have neither of this things nor a refrigerator with an chipped ice setting, then you can always use the mallet and bag method. Fill a ziploc bag with ice and smash it (preferably on a not important surface) with a rubber mallet. If you lack this item, then go for a heavy pan. Put the ice in a bowl and add milks.

Once your ice and milks are in a bowl, then add the fruits, rice cakes, and the red beans. Ready set? Om Nom! So good...and despite its dessert status, awesome breakfast.


  1. I think I deleted a comment of yours that was in my spam folder. If I did, sorry about that.

    You have an interesting site. Bravo for helping out the young and the studious navigate the world of food amidst the dining hall food deserts. Everyone should know how to feed themselves.

  2. Oh my goodness I LOVE pat bing su. Since I've arrived in Korea 6 months ago I became obsessed and try to eat it whenever possible ^^