Wednesday, October 10, 2007


Anyone who has a craving for sweet & cold desserts like shaved ice & ABC should try this:

Never seen it? Looks odd? Well, this is "cantung" or "kantung". (unsure of the spelling here) It used to be a very popular dessert back when our parents were in their teens. I bet some of you might have not even heard of it. It's a dying tradition and only certain old folks are known to make this sweet tasty ice popsicle.

The stall

It's hard to find "cantung" stalls still operating in Kuching. There used to be one at Jalan Mendu but the stall somehow 'disappeared' or moved to a different location over the years However, my friends and I managed to locate one somewhere along Jalan Keretapi, thanks to Brendan. In fact, the stall was a stone's throw away from his house.

Besides cantung, the stall also sells ABC & junk food.

The stall is merely a simple make shift shed, run by an elderly couple. Methods of making "cantung" are pretty much primitive. In fact, I was pretty much surprised to find shaved ice being made by hooking up a slab of ice on a thorny brush and grating the ice on a small wooden apparatus with a blade in the middle. The act of it is similar of that of grating cheese on a grater. No fancy looking machine used here.

Cantung making in process

"Cantung" is made by compressing the shaved ice into a small cup. A stick similar to those satay sticks is shoved into the ice. More and more ice is packed on the side of it, sort of like an ice popsicle. Different coloring and brown sugar syrup is poured over to add taste. The final product is a sweet tasting frozen ice on a stick. :)

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t1^g.j0.J1 said...

my parents still talk abt this, unfortunately, penang just had to grow up. lol

nice to know it's still around

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