Tag Archives: shaved ice dessert

Nam Kheang Sai

Nam Kheang Sai means ‘shaved ice’ in Thai. This a traditional Thai desert dating back hundreds of years to the time ice first came to Thailand. That must have been a great moment for Bangkokers as it gets incredibly hot in the city. It is hard to escape the heat when there is no beach nearby.

step 1

The dish starts with fruit and sweets placed in a bowl

Originally Nam Kheang Sai Was Only for the Rich

Originally Nam Kheang Sai was only available to the very rich, but with the introduction of ice making machines to Thailand it became available to the wider population. It is still eaten all over Thailand. It is sold by vendors from hand carts. The recipe remains largely unchanged, although most vendors now use a hand powered machine to cut the ice rather than a knife or mandolin slicer.

step 2

Ice Is Shaved into the Bowl

Now The Dish Is Very Cheap

The vendor in the pictures was outside Hua Lamphong train Station in Bangkok. This delicacy cost the princely sum of 15 Thai Baht (less than half an American dollar).

step 3

The shaved ice is compacted to form a dome

Fruit and Sweets Form the Bottom Layer

The first stage of the process is filling the bowl with fruit or sweets. I had longon and nata cubes (a coconut extract).

step 4

Syrup Is Poured On Top of the Shaved Ice

Shaved Ice Comes Next

Next the ice is shaved and placed on top. The next stage of the process is to add syrup.

step 5

Condensed Milk is Poured On Top

Syrup Is Poured On Top

There are lots of differently coloured syrups: red, green, orange, purple, blue and yellow. The colours don’t approximate to a particular natural flavour (such as strawberry or raspberry) but the Thai’s seem to like the taste.

Nam Kheang Sai

The finished dish of Nam Kheang Sai

Finally Condensed Milk is Added

The final step is to pour condensed milk over the top and the dish is finished. I didn’t think I was going to like it, but it was tasty and refreshing. I recommend giving it a try. It is one of those Thai street food experiences worth giving a go.

Next read about more great Thai Dishes