Last year, my coworkers at 3rd Ward asked Julian what desserts I liked so they could surprise me for my birthday. I only found out after the party that he wrote this:
Dessert-wise, Jess likes a lot of stuff--generally the more inventive/outlandish the better. Panna cottas, flans, fun ice creams (pandan, black sesame, red bean) and fruity sorbets, tarts, cannolis, Greek, Turkish desserts/baklava, strange vegan chia-seed concoctions. Her favorite dessert may be ABC ice, if you find that. But anything in that range, she'll love. She doesn't like cake very much. Later! J
Clearly, this is a window into my soul. Julian knows me very well.
The dessert above is from PONJI Juice Bar from the New World Mall in Flushing. I also highly recommend the Tiger's Blood (strawberry and coconut) flavor at Imperial Woodpecker Sno-Balls. In Chinatown, you pick your flavors by selecting from rows of gelatinous shapes and beans suspended in neon fruit syrup. They look like science experiments until they are poured over ice and they are delicious.
These go by many names: Sno-balls, snow cones, shave ice, Mexican raspados, Korean bingsu, Taiwanese bao bing, Indian golas and chuskis. One day, I want to go to a maple shack, where you drag a popsicle stick of maple syrup through snow, like a frosty cotton candy.
But Julian and I call this dessert ABC Ice (short for air batu campur), because that's what it was called at our college Malaysian spot Bentara, where we first had this. We've had a lot of desserts since then.