My favourite thing to eat in Korea during the hot summer is definitely bingsu. This popular dessert of shaved ice with assorted toppings is a perfect way to stave off the sweltering heat! You might be familiar with the classic: traditional Patbingsu, which is simply made up of shaved frozen milk with sweet red bean sauce. However, many more varieties of patbingsu exist today! I would like to list some of the craziest, yet unique styles of bingsus that reign supreme during the hot summer months.
BIBIM BINGSU · 비빔빙수
To start off my list, Bibim Bingsu is the new combination of bibimbap and bingsu. Bibim bingsu displays the appearance of actual bibimbap using sweet ingredients that are used in any other summer bingsus! Shaved ice would be in place of where rice would normally be in bibimbap. Then, chopped fruits and nuts of various colours mimic the vegetable-portion of the bibimbap and sunny-side-up-egg-shaped jelly would top it off. Depending on which café you are, you are also given a fruit syrup to substitute the bibimbap’s gochujang sauce!
FLOWER BINGSU · 화분빙수
The Flower Bingsu definitely deserves a spot on the list with its extremely creative twist! It also keeps the traditional patbingsu taste by using minimal amount of ingredients. It consists of a big flower pot filled with shaved ice and condensed milk, topped with sweet red bean paste! It also comes with a large gardening shovel to mix everything together. Other variations use cookie crumbs to simulate the soil topped with jelly worms and chocolate rocks as well. The presentation is absolutely adorable and if you are down for some traditional bingsu, this is it!
DINORSAUR EGG BINGSU · 공룡알빙수
Next one on my list features a white chocolate egg on top of an oreo bingsu. Is this not enough to make a prediction on what the next bingsu will be? Okay, then I will give you another hint: the fun and interactive part of this bingsu is when you use a hammer to crack the egg open only to find a little dinosaur inside. Dinosaur Egg Bingsu is made up of oreo crumbles, white chocolate egg, milk chocolate dinosaur, finally drizzled with dark chocolate syrup on top. Does this make you want to hatch your own dinosaur?
JJAJANG BINGSU · 짜장빙수
Jjajang Bingsu is a must-try bingsu if you visit Incheon! While “bingsu” actually consists of shaved ice underneath the toppings, the white noodles are actually soft ice cream. The jjajang sauce is chocolate and the yellow and green peas are candies. It comes with three syringes full of different kinds of flavoured-syrups. Then, you mix it, just like a normal bingsu! This is definitely an unusual bingsu, but it’s cute! XD
CHERRY BLOSSOM BINGSU · 벚꽃빙수
Lovely would be the right word to describe the next bingsu on my list! This one features cherry blossom flavoured pink-paste on top of the shaved ice milk, topped with pink sugar crunches and dried cherry blossoms! Cherry Blossom Bingsu surely delights my appetite with its lovely presentation and the taste definitely plays up to its fame!
SNOWMAN BINGSU · 눈사람빙수
Some other unique bingsus include the Snowman Bingsu, where it mimics, of course, the snowman! Snowman-shaped shaved ice is served with two kinds of gelato (whichever you choose) and some chopped nuts. You are given a cup of condensed milk to adjust the concentration of the bingsu depending on your taste preference. You might be very happy to find out that there is another scoop of ice cream and some sweet red bean paste inside the snowman as well! ;)
Other famous bingsus include the classic, Fruit Bingsu · 과일빙수, Macaroon Bingsu · 마카롱빙수, Cotton Candy Bingsu · 솜사탕빙수, Dageumbari Bingsu · 다금바리빙수, Oreo Bingsu · 오레오빙수, World Bingsu · 월드빙수, Gamasot Bingsu · 가마솥빙수, Rice-cake Bingsu · 떡빙수, Cheese Bingsu · 치즈빙수, Melon Bingsu · 메론빙수, Injulmi Bingsu · 인절미빙수, Milk-tea Bingsu · 밀크티빙수, Green-tea Noodle Bingsu · 녹차누들빙수, Coffee-cheese Bingsu · 커피치즈빙수, Cheesecake Bingsu · 치즈케잌빙수, Noodle Bingsu · 누들빙수 and many more!
From the traditional red beans to new combinations of ice cream and fruits, bingsus are one of the most popular summer treats in Korea during the hot summer months. Are there any particular bingsu that you would like to try out to beat the heat in Korea?