The slushie is dessert that all youngsters in Taiwan grew up with. 臺一牛奶大王 Milk King, in particular, specializes in the typical Taiwanese slushie – heck that’s all they serve there.
A regular Slushie is shaved ice with different toppings. The shaved ice, is derived, often, from a solid ice block. With a rotating system, it is shaved down to almost snow-like texture. Similar to the Hawaiian ice slushie, with flavored fruity syrup, the Taiwanese version features different fruit toppings with rice glutinous balls, and other toppings. Often accompanied with condensed milk and/or sweetened syrup, The Slushi is served in a large bowl, while the Hawaiian is in a cone. Imagine the American Icee drink, popular from 7/11 stores, rather than with heavy syrup, you would add fruits like mangos, strawberries, and other fruits. The rice glut balls include tapioca pearls and larger pearls.
My personal favorite topping combination is soft boiled peanuts with condensed milk. This simple combination, I first had in my early teens, brings back fond Taiwanese memories. When I was a kid, I had this almost every time we went out. The texture of the mushy peanuts, which might get some time to getting used to, is acceptably grainy with its natural sweetness. Taiwanese peanuts are famously known for its sweet flavor. The condensed milk, which is more like a syrup, adds to the peanuts. Understandably, like all things, familiarity is key. I would say, after having this combination a couple of times, I think I would like it like I do.
The Milk King, located near National Taiwan University, has seen many students come and go. Every night, even in winter, seems like crowds line up out the door. Demand for just slushies requires an upstairs dining area. Milk King has customers from all over of Asia, as we met some Hong Konger’s that night.