Raspadas – Refreshing Mexican Snow Cones

There are Mexican dessert recipes for all seasons – gooey cinnamon-scented chocolate cakes with hot chocolate sauce to warm you up in the winter and chilled strawberry soup to cool you down in the springtime. If you are looking for something really refreshing for the summer, what about making some Mexican raspadas?

A snow cone, or raspada in Mexican, is a paper cone filled with crushed ice and topped with a flavored syrup. Raspadas, which are also known as piraguas, minutas or granizados, are popular in Texas, California and throughout the southwestern United States, as well as in Mexico.

They are well loved all over South America and different countries have their own ways of serving them. Venezuelan raspadas, for example, are topped with condensed milk. Snow cones are also enjoyed all over Asia. They are a low-cost summertime treat and they are either served in a cup or on a stick.

Tasty Snow Cone Flavors

Classic Mexican raspada flavors include tamarind, guava, pistachio, cucumber, watermelon, chamoy, picocito and leche. Chamoy is fruit with chili sauce, picocito is chili and lemon and leche is a combination of milk and cinnamon.

If you thought that chili was the last thing that could cool you down on a hot day, you might like to try a chamoy raspada! The chili makes you sweat and this does actually cool you down. Of course, not all raspada syrup recipes contain chili and some are simply fruit-based.

Recipe for Mexican Raspadas

This recipe serves six people and the combination of strawberry and lemon is really refreshing. You can use an ice crusher or ice shaving machine to make the crushed or shaved ice. Alternatively, just drop the ice cubes into a food processor or blender. Not all blenders are capable of crushing ice so check the manufacturer’s instructions if you are not sure or just use a rolling pin to crush the ice yourself.

You can vary the ingredients in this Mexican snow cones recipe if you like, swapping the strawberries for raspberries, the lemon juice for lime juice or using another type of fruit. You can also get readymade flavored syrups, which are handy for making snow cones.

What you will need:

  • 10 cups ice cubes
  • 4 cups hulled strawberries
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • Fresh mint, to garnish

How to make them:

Puree the strawberries in a food processor or blender, and then transfer the puree to a pan, adding the sugar. Stir it occasionally over a moderate heat until the mixture boils, then stir in the lemon juice and let it cool.

Cover and chill the strawberry mixture for a few hours, then shave or crush the ice and spoon it into chilled bowls or paper cones. Pour the strawberry syrup over the top and garnish with the fresh mint. Serve these raspadas immediately.

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