So, you’re walking around town, the sun is blazing hot and you feel like having a cooling ice cream. You see these guys pushing a block of ice on top of a colourful painted cart with equally colourful bottles on either side. You’ve found it, schaafijs awaits you.
What is schaafijs? It’s literally shaved ice because the tool used is normally used for shaving wood, a block plane, but in this case the block of ice.
This is Surinam style ice cream and it is also known as a granita or a ‘slush puppy’, remember that word? Choose your favourite flavoured syrup, these are usually home made (fruity) syrups like passion fruit (markoeza), pine apple, ginger or susu. The cup is filled with water et voilà, you have your ice cream, stir and eat/drink. But hang on, would you like it creamier? Then ask the vendor to add some milk in your cup.
My favourite is the ‘orgeade’ flavour made of almonds and mixed with some milk.
I noticed that the flavour is almost similar to the ‘orgeat’ in France and the ‘horchata’ in Spain.
These vendors and their carts are usually walking around town stopping several times here and there so you will definitely bump into one on a (hot) summer day.
Do treat yourself to one or more cups of flavoured shaved ice :-).