Frozen desserts are some of the oldest and most ubiquitous sweet treats on the planet. In our second installment of Universal Eats, we examine the history and universality of all things ice cream!

It may seem hard to believe, but frozen desserts were originally a luxury for the super wealthy. Back in the day, refrigeration was hard to come by! But now that modern technology has democratized ice cream, sorbets ,and the rest of their delicious ilk, they’re one of the most popular snacks on the planet.

Here are just some of the international variations we explore in the video above:

  • Dondurma  – A Turkish form of ice cream that’s thick and sticky. Its elastic texture is due to the addition of salep or gum.
  • Kulfi – An Indian frozen dessert, that’s dense and creamy. Seriously, it’s not whipped at all, so you won’t find any air bubbles in it.
  • Halo-halo – This popular Filipino dessert consists of shaved ice and evaporated milk. It’s usually topped off with a variety of ingredients including sweet beans, coconut, and other assorted fruit, making it the South Asian sundae of your dreams!
  • Mochi – You have to love these Japanese balls of sweet cream surrounded by sticky rice dough. These are the dumplings of the ice cream world!
  • Paletas – These Mexican ice pops put the ice cream truck to shame.

If you’re not screaming for ice cream by the end of the video, well, you might want to check your pulse.

Oh and just in case you missed the first episode of Universal Eats, be sure to check out the amazing world of dumplings!

Chowhound’s Universal Eats is a new video series that explores foods that transcend cultures and borders around the world to globally to connect us all. Episodes will premiere every Tuesday on Facebook Watch, so be sure to follow our page to catch each installment.

Jessica is a former Associate Editor at Chowhound. Follow her on Twitter @volume_knob for updates on snacks and cats.
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