Caucasian Asian: Patbingsu (Korean shaved ice)

Sarah Margolin, Staff writer

My love for anything Korean related started off when I watched my first K-pop music video about two years ago. Then, my friend showed me these two Canadian bloggers living in Korea (Eat Your Kimchi) and I was introduced to even more of the culture.

Every other week they have a video in which they go around and eat a bunch of delicious looking food in Korea. A video they posted about a year ago was on patbingsu, an extremely popular dessert, especially when it is scorching hot outside.

When I went to Korean Immersion camp this summer I was finally able to try it. I was super pumped because I had always wanted to try it. (Not to mention it was only $1). During free time, I went up and got my first dish of patbingsu. Let me tell you, this stuff is freaking delicious.

After trying it at my Korean camp I have yet to find a place in Iowa that sells it. So, I looked up a couple of recipes online and mixed and matched a few of my favorite things from each one to put this recipe together.

The name “patbingsu” pretty much explains the main ingredients of the dish. “Pat” (pronounced “pot”) are the sweet red beans on top of it and “bingsu” is the shaved ice. Along with these two ingredients are things like ddeok (pronounced like duck but with a stronger “d” sound). The English word for ddeok is glutinous rice cake, but most people know it under the Japanese name mochi. (Aka the marshmallow looking things they have at frozen yogurt places.) Next you pile on sweetened condensed milk, fruit jellies, corn flakes (I used Crispix), chocolate syrup, and fruit. There are thousand of different other kinds out there but this is the basic level one patbingsu.

All of these ingredients are pretty easy to find in a normal supermarket so going downtown to C-Fresh or Double Dragon (two of the three Asian markets I know about) is only needed to get the sweet red beans. The hardest thing to find would be the ddeok but if a frozen yogurt shop has mochi as a topping just fill a bowl with it and get the ddeok that way. Along with the ingredients being easy to find, making it is a piece of cake, not mention delicious.

This recipe makes enough for a serving of Patbingsu but feel free to adjust this however you want. If you want to add more of anything or take some of the toppings away go right ahead. The toppings listed here is a very small list of everything that can be put on patbingsu. To find out more topping ideas just look up more recipes to see what other people are putting on theirs.