The Ice Kachang Ball, also spelt as Ice Kacang Ball, or simply, Ice Ball, is a cold, affordable, and mouth-watering Singaporean and Malaysian dessert. It has evolved from just a simple Ice Ball to many sophisticated versions over the years into the forms we are familiar with today.
“The Ice Ball used to be just red, green and brown. Sometimes instead of brown, the uncle used yellow coloured syrup. I liked the brown flavour best, though, because that’s Gula Melaka,” Chandru Rajwani, 56, a local businessman who grew up in Singapore.
Ice Kachang, literally translated from Malay means ice and nuts. Ice Kachang means ice and nuts when directly translated from Malay language. This name was given to this sweet and luscious dessert because in olden times, Ice Kachang Ball sellers used to sprinkle crushed nuts on it. Some dessert shops, like Annie’s Peanut Ice Kachang located at 20 Ghim Moh Road, still practise this today.
Steven Lee, an Ice Kachang Ball vendor at the Singapore Food Trail restaurant located at the Singapore Flyer, says: “I’ve been making Ice Balls for over 20 years. I got interested in it because my parents used to sell drinks and made Ice Kachang Balls to bring in more business.”
However, even this passionate vendor admits that the Ice Kachang Ball is outdated. Sadly, the demand for Ice Kachang Balls has seen a stark dip as modern desserts like the Ice Kachang found today that is served in a bowl replaces this traditional treat. The once ubiquitous Ice Kachang