Ding a ling a ling, the ice cream man is here.
Whoever doesn’t like ice cream has to have had a deprived childhood. Growing up in Singapore, the treat for me was Magnolia ice cream on a stick that’s coated with dark chocolate. It wasn’t a bar in those days and the ice cream man would come around and ring his bell.
There was also the Uncle with the scoops which would go with bread. I wasn’t allowed these at home because some of the ice cream was homemade and Grandma wasn’t having any potential tummy problems for her precious granddaughter!
And then there was ice cream potong….even more lethal in her eyes as it was ALL homemade and who knows if the maker had washed his hands or whatever other health hazards lurked in those tempting sticks.
So good ole’ “safe” Magnolia it was and I safely survived the scourge of the tummy bugs, having in the meanwhile worked for countless hotels and had my fill of designer ice creams and the ubiquitous Haagen Daz.
Until I arrived in Ipoh in 1996!
I was lunching with friends at Overseas Restaurant when someone exclaimed, “Oh the ice cream potong Uncle is here”. Upon which she dashed out and came back laden with sticks and sticks of ice cream, all loosely wrapped and melting rapidly.
I looked at the one I was handed, a special Cempedak one; and throwing aside memories of Grandma’s finger wagging admonitions of dire consequences, I bit into it.
Pure Bliss! Chock full of the fruit, held together by creamy coconut santan with a smidgen of sugar, the sweet Chempedak lending its own sweetness to the stick.
“Oh they are out of durian, not in season,” I was told before I proceeded to tuck into the Cendol Stick next. Equally delicious but not as irresistible; I made a note to place an order for Durian with this ice cream Uncle and sure enough, the next time I had that, it was everything I ever wanted in an ice cream stick.
And then Uncle disappeared. He used to appear with his bicycle, his frozen sticks on the back of it and dispensed them from opposite the RHB bank at the Greentown little roundabout and when he disappeared, I and all my friends were bereft! Rumour had it that he had left for KL where his children were.
So I forgot about ice cream potong for a long time….meanwhile tasting all the sticks that friends would shove at me to ease my bereavement. But no one came close to Uncle on a bicycle.
Until William called me one day, very excited and said I just had to taste his latest masterpiece.
For more reviews, go to SeeFoon’s blog at www.IpohFoodDiva.my