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Recipe for Philippine Halo-Halo – Filipino Dessert Overload

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Halo-Halo with Sorbetes or Ice Cream

Halo-Halo with Sorbetes or Ice Cream

Halo-Halo with Ube Halaya

Halo-Halo with Ube Halaya

Halo-halo is the queen of Filipino desserts during summer time – it looks regal from the bottom up!

This mouthwatering dessert is usually served in clear tall glasses or hollow bowls, letting one peek through its sweets galore that are heaped one on top of the other.

In many hotels, resorts and high-end restaurants in the Philippines, halo-halo is served in emptied coconut shells.

The bottom layer of a glass of halo-halo is filled with sweetened fruits and beans, sugar, and a medley of other colorful and tasty foods.

Its middle layer is packed with shaved ice.

The top layer is reserved for heavenly Filipino desserts – scoops of sorbetes or Filipino coconut milk ice cream, leche flan or Philippine crème caramel, and ube halaya or boiled, grated, and sweetened purple yam.

Just when you think all these delicious treats would be enough to make the queenly halo-halo, your Filipino halo-halo vendor would suddenly sprinkle pinipig or pounded and crushed young rice and pour evaporated milk into your halo-halo glass.


Halo in Filipino means “mix”.

With its mixture of superb ingredients, halo-halo really lives up to the meaning of its name.

Halo-Halo – From Summer Dessert to Dessert for All Seasons

So popular is halo-halo in the Philippines that it fuels a cottage industry in the country.

Each Philippine summer season, which lasts from end-March up until May, many Filipinos would sell halo-halo in their neighborhoods.

Customers are not hard to find. In fact, they come in throngs!

Filipinos always look forward to sampling this seasonal dessert that they have missed most parts of the year.

Plus, halo-halo is awesome in quenching thirst during the Philippines' blazing summer days.

Halo-halo is not just a street food, however.

From fast food chains to classy restaurants, halo-halo is served all year round, putting to rest once and for all the old notion that halo-halo is a dessert reserved only for the summer days.

Recipe for Halo-Halo from the Philippines

You can prepare Philippines’ queenly dessert halo-halo right in your own home.

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While halo-halo makes use of mostly tropical fruits, you can just let loose your creativity and make some substitutions.

For example, you can use peaches, pineapples, or even cherries if you do not have the fruits listed here.

You can also use canned fruit cocktails if you want.

The key, really, is to be resourceful and not to put off making halo-halo just because you cannot find one or two of halo-halo's original ingredients.

Ingredients for Making Halo-Halo

Note: Many of the ingredients here are canned and be bought conveniently from Asian, Filipino or grocery stores.

  • evaporated milk – canned
  • garbanzos – 2 tablespoons; sweetened
  • ice = 1 cup; shaved
  • kaong or sugar palm – 2 tablespoons; sweetened
  • kidney beans – 2 tablespoons; sweetened
  • langka or jackfruit – 2 tablespoons
  • leche flan – 1 tablespoon
  • macapuno or very soft coconut meat – 2 tablespoons; sweetened
  • pinipig or crushed young rice – 1 tablespoon; cooked
  • saba or cardava banana – 2 tablespoons; sweetened
  • sorbetes or ice cream – 1 scoop
  • sugar
  • ube or purple yam – 1 tablespoon; sweetened

Instructions for Making Halo-Halo

  1. In a glass, bowl, or emptied coconut shell, add in sugar.
  2. Add each of the sweetened ingredients one at a time, taking care to layer them one on top of the other.
  3. Top with shaved ice.
  4. Place leche flan, ube, sorbetes, and langka on top of shaved ice.
  5. Pour evaporated milk into the mixture.
  6. Sprinkle with pinipig.
  7. Serve your halo-halo immediately.

Copyright © 2012 Kerlyn Bautista

All Rights Reserved

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Lilibeth Sevilla on March 11, 2012:

I like pilipino food.

truefaith7 from USA on February 10, 2012:

I've never seen a dessert like this. If I ever make it to the Philippines, I just might give it a try! Very interesting...and tasty-looking!

roses4me on February 09, 2012:

I love your recipe....can't wait to try this.

asmaiftikhar from Pakistan on February 06, 2012:

halo halo.... a delicious hub .

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