Piccadilly Raspa - Gastro Obscura


Piccadilly Raspa

Kool-Aid and pickles make this Southwestern snow cone an unforgettable flavor bomb.

With a fun-loving name and rosy hue, the piccadilly raspa might catch eaters unawares when the “dill” part of this sweetened snow cone waltzes across the tongue. Give it a moment, though, and the salty-sweet one-two punch of pickles and Kool-Aid resolves harmoniously into an unforgettable snack from the Southwest United States.

To make the authentic version of this treat, start with shaved, not crushed, ice. Scoop the ice into a styrofoam cup or paper cone and dowse the raspa (from the Spanish for hielo raspado, or “scraped ice”) with green and red chamoy, a pickled fruit sauce that is at once salty, sweet, sour, and spicy (it’s often made with chiles). Sprinkle cherry Kool-Aid on top before applying the piccadilly crown jewel: chopped dill pickles. You can also take your snow cone to the next level with chile powder and gummy bears.

The piccadilly raspa is rarely sold outside Arizona and Texas, where it is a prized part of the contemporary culinary landscape. When in the region look for local raspa trucks or stands. The very lucky might even find a “Honk 4 Piccadilly” van.

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