I spent the first fourteen years of my life in Hong Kong, where summers were hot and humid. From March or April onwards, temperatures remained above 30ºC and stayed that way until late October, when it would cool down just enough to be comfortable. I spent most of my days in air-conditioned spaces like the mall or cinema—spaces so cold you’d have to carry a sweater with you—and was baffled whenever I came back to Toronto to find that plenty of homes here didn’t have air conditioning, and if they did, it wasn’t particularly strong.
While Canadian summers meant ice-cold lemonade, Hong Kong summers meant Hong Kong style iced tea or crushed watermelon ice. To cool off, my friends and I would go out and get Chinese dessert. The beauty of Chinese dessert is that you can have it hot in the winter, and cold in the summer. I’d order a cold tofu pudding and a crushed watermelon ice, my go-to drink in the summer. It was cool and refreshing, and the texture was almost like a crushed popsicle.
When I got the email from Sherrie about #DRINKTHESUMMER, I wanted to make a blackberry and red basil lemonade. But then I thought of all the summers I spent in Hong Kong drinking crushed watermelon ice with my friends in Chinese dessert parlours, each of us perched on our stools attempting to cool down, and I knew that I had to share a recipe for it. So, here it is: an extremely easy Chinese watermelon slushy.
Please check out all the other wonderful #DRINKTHESUMMER recipes! They all sound incredible, and while I’m excited for fall to roll around, I want summer to last long enough so that I can enjoy every one of these drinks on a patio. Thank you Sherrie for having me #drinkthesummer with you <3
HONG KONG STYLE CRUSHED WATERMELON ICE
Yields 2 servings.
NOTES: Traditionally, crushed watermelon ice is made simply by blending watermelon and ice together. Rather than use water-based ice cubes, I decided to make “watermelon ice cubes” by freezing watermelon juice, which I then blended with fresh watermelon.
For the watermelon ice cubes:
- 1 cup (143g) watermelon
- 1 1/2 cups (375ml) water
For the crushed watermelon ice:
- 2 heaping cups (306g) watermelon
- 2 cups watermelon ice
- Prepare the watermelon ice by blending 1 cup (143g) watermelon and 1 1/2 cups (375ml) water in a blender. Pour the mixture into ice trays and freeze overnight or for at least 4 hours.
- Once the ice cubes are frozen, remove them from the tray. In a blender, blend 2 heaping cups (306g) of watermelon with 2 cups of the watermelon ice. The key to making a killer crushed ice is by blending equal parts ice and watermelon!
Your edible plant enthusiast,