frozen delights (simply taiwan 3)

Chaw-Bing 剉冰

There were many times I told my cousins "you've not really been to Taiwan if you haven't ________."  And, one of those "fill in the blanks" was "eaten cuo-bing" (剉冰, shaved ice).

Cuo-bing is a wonderful Taiwanese delight!!  Cuo-bing is shaved ice topped with yummy stuff.  I like it topped with either fruit or an assortment of chewy things.  And, traditionally it is topped with things like peanuts, beans, sweet potatoes, or taro pieces.  In addition to these yummy things, a sweet syrup water is poured onto the ice and sometimes sweet condensed milk is also added.

The above photo was taken at a self-serve cuo-bing shop at a night market.  You fill up the bowl, they weigh it, and then top it with ice and the brown sugar water.

Here are some fruit topped bings I've enjoyed:

Fruit Bings

Here are some of my students enjoying a great big bowl of fruit bing:


This one is a more traditional bing one of my friends enjoyed--it is topped with green beans, herbal jelly, and peanuts:

traditional chaw bing

These girls are enjoying ice covered with green beans.  Yeah, I prefer mango too. ;)

eating ice with beans

There are many kinds and types of cuo-bing. And . . . they are so YUMMY!!!!

Lots of Kinds of CuoBing!!


  1. Is the "herbal jelly" grass jelly... like in the canned drink called "grass jelly drink?" I've read about people eating shaved ice from street vendors... but had no idea that you but all of that stuff on it! I figured it was like shaved ice just with sugary syrup like we have here in the US. I could eat that... especially with all of the fruit. No so sure about the green beans though!

  2. We have something similar in Singapore which is called Ice Kacang (which means ice bean). Whenever my mum tells me stories about her childhood, there is sure to be one about her 5-cent 'ice ball'.

  3. When we were in Taiwan adopting our son, we were amazed at how huge the portions were! Are you affiliated with any denomination in Taiwan? We tried meeting some IMB missionaries while we were in Taiwan, but we had a hard time finding any.

  4. Joe, Jane, Jia and WillaMay 13, 2008 at 6:32 AM

    Wow! I really appreciate this series! Thanks for doing this!

  5. Peanuts and green beans on ice? Yes. That IS weird!

  6. @Sarah . . .
    I've not knowingly eaten "grass jelly." In fact, I'd not heard of it till another blogger wrote about how wonderful it was. On this post she shows a bowl of it in cuobing fashion and then one of her eating it (after talking about her bike ride for awhile).
    I have had what I thought was "herbal jelly." But I wonder now if it really is the same thing as "grass jelly" . . . just a different translation of the same Chinese word OR . . . if the two really are two different things.
    I don't know . . . . :)
    But, I do so much admire/appreciate your bravery and willingness to try new things. That is awesome!
    Also, thanks for the mention of my site on yours the other day. Ok, I'm headed home and on the drive home will think about what will be Monday's topic. :)
    in joy,
    amanda :)

  7. @marianne--I think some of the photos in the mosaic of multiple bings are from Singapore.

  8. @Jeff . . .
    Because of some trolls, I now choose to approve every comment . . . but typepad does a bad job of letting people who comment know this is what happens. So, I did approve your first comment, and it is now published. Sorry if that was a hassle or confusing.
    I actually partner with IMB missionaries! So, I know all of them down south and many up north. Sorry you had such a hard time finding them/us before you came.
    When were you here adopting your son? I'll check out your site tomorrow when I have some free time!
    Thanks for commenting,
    amanda :)


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