At The Humble Scoop, we try to bring back fond memories of growing up , and through these ice creams that we create, we hope to provide a sense of comfort and happiness of a simpler time. Hence, each and every of our ice cream flavours has a specific memory tied to it.
The Regular Flavours
(Milk Ice Cream with Black Current Jam)
This flavour was created as a tribute to the regular ripple ice cream from the ice cream push carts. I wanted to elevate the experience by creating a rich creamy ice cream with generous swirls of black current ( Ribena) jam, whilst keeping the original nostalgic visual of the dessert. That’s why it’s called the Atas Ripple.
(Salted Coconut & Gula Melaka)
I always watched my grandmother and my mother order Chendol from the dessert stores at the hawker centres on hot sweltering mornings after shopping at the wet market to beat the heat. Whilst eating, they will be reviewing which butcher had the best cut of pork or if the vegetable stall uncle/auntie threw in some freebies for them (a of spring onions or a few chilli padis).
This flavour is a memory of the dessert my grandmother used to cook for the family only on special occasions, due to the tediousness of the process. It is referred to by many names: ” Burbur Hitam ” , ” Pulut Hitam “, ” Orh Chut Bee ” “Orh Bee Beh”.
I remember her standing in the kitchen in front of the stove working her grandmother-magic that made everything smell heavenly. I asked if I could stir it for her, but she always chased me away in fear that I might burn myself on the bubbling thick liquid.
“Don’t stand too close. Later you burn yourself pain-pain then orh-bee-good ah” she used to warn and tease.
When it came down to naming this ice cream, Orh Bee Good it is.
(Earl Grey Milk Tea)
When you feel like you study or work until very sian, come and eat our Earl Grey Milk Teh ice cream, so you can Gam-Ba-Teh!
(Hawthorn Berry, aka. 山楂)
I remember getting these little red discs as an afternoon treat. I would try to peel each layer out separately to savour them slowly. It was a good afternoon.
Most of us would have grew up eating this, or receiving it as part of a goody bag from a friend’s birthday party or even during children’s day, when our schools gave our little snack packets to us. For this sorbet, we used the dried haw berries to draw out the flavour, before finishing it with a handful of the chopped hawthorn berry discs for a feel of nostalgia.
(Pineapple, Lime, Chilli)
My mother used to tell me stories about her childhood as my bedtime stories, and this one always brought a smile to her face. She used to buy cut pineapples from the road side fruit store uncles, and they had a huge container of dark soy sauce with cut chilli padi. The kids would smother the pineapples in that vat of sauce and ‘chut’ off ONLY the sauce before double dipping again
She only stopped after her mother found out and banned her and her siblings from ever eating pineapples from the road side stores again. I made this flavour as a tribute to everyone that used to or still eat their pineapples this way (minus the double dipping please), and also in hopes that this flavour combination would be passed down to the younger generations.
This flavour was created in hopes to bring everyone back to a Saturday morning where we woke up early to catch our favourite cartoons on TV, without a care in the world about homework, or school. All that was important to us was the TV remote, a bowl of cereal and the cartoons that were showing at that moment (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers FTW) .
We always had to have cut fruits after dinner . Sometimes when the guava fruit is in season, a rare guest will show up in our household – a packet of sour plum powder. Grandma did not like us to eat too much preserved food items hence this is a huge treat for all of us ( and for her as well because she secretly liked it too).
We would always try to get every single speck of sour plum powder on the plate to coat on the guava slices so that it will not go to waste. Grandma would probably disapprove of this sorbet but I’m sure this particular flavour combination would bring back fond memories for most people in Singapore too.
I wanted to bring back a familiar feeling of cracking open and eating pistachios (开心果) during Chinese New Year. I used to snack on these little roasted green nuts while drawing and coloring different patterns on the shells . To bring back that fragrant roasted pistachio taste, we toast and grind up our own pistachios for this ice cream.
Black Sesame Paste
This is a memory of eating tangyuans (glutinous rice balls) during winter solstices, and also during the last day of Chinese New Year. We would always have family reunions on these days as well (other than the eve of Chinese New Year), and tangyuans would definitely be part of the dessert menu as it symbolizes unity.
One of my aunts would prepare the peanut soup and whilst it’s boiling, she would go around “taking orders” of everyone’s preferred filling and amount to be eaten, so that there would not be any left overs. I always picked the black sesame paste filling ones because my mom told me that eating black sesame will help my hair look more like Snow White’s hair. Looking back , I think my mom just didn’t want me to have a cough after eating too much peanuts.
Kopi C Siew Dai
We wanted to make a coffee ice cream that would be able to represent our Singaporean identity, and we knew immediately that we wanted to make a Kopi-C Siew Dai ice cream using Nanyang coffee beans – and it had to be gao enough to satisfy the connoisseurs of our kopitiam coffee.
“TAK KIU PENG!!” the kopitiam auntie would bellow across the food center. An old timey way of referring to our favourite chocolate malt drink due to the soccer player depicted on the packaging. I always liked to take it ‘dinosaur’ style, which is to have extra powder sprinkled on it.
I mean, most of us have had the ‘achievement unlocked’ feeling when we sneaked into the kitchen to eat the powder straight from the packet. I wanted to capture that ‘gao’ chocolatey feeling in this ice cream, minus the remains of the powder sticking to our mouths which almost always gave us away.
Old School Chocolate
I was a boring kid. My mom would bring me to ice cream parlours and all I wanted was chocolate ice cream although I had 10 over flavours placed in front of me. Somehow I trusted that chocolate will never disappoint me, or fail me. Of course I had to make a chocolate ice cream as a classic flavour. This is for the kids whom were just like me, and the ones whose inner child just needs the comfort of a good ol’ dependable chocolate ice cream.
Sugarcane with Lemon
At some point in our lives, most of us would have been seated around a table at a hawker centre, sharing a variety of food ( sambal stingray, BBQ charcoal chicken wings, satay etc.) with our friends and family. And nothing beats washing down the delicious food with a cup of ice cold freshly pressed sugar cane juice, even more so when the weather is sweltering and humid.
Tea-Rex (milk tea with raspberry jam swirls) was crafted with our well-loved teh peng in mind, but with a surprising twist to it.
The Seasonal Flavours
We used to look forward to mango season as it would mean that there would be sweet, fragrant mangoes appearing on the dinner table as a sweet after meal treat.
However my grandma decided not to buy it too often as they are considered ‘heaty’ foods. She told me that mangoes are very expensive and we couldn’t afford it. So the next time we had mangoes ar home, I tried burying the seeds in a field near us and hoped to grow my own tree, so my family would have an abundant flow of mangoes forever… But it never grew ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
So now, when it is mango season, we get really excited when we get our hands on a batch of sweet fragrant mangoes to create our mango sorbets!
Mandarin oranges are a must have during Chinese New Year, as the Cantonese name for it is ‘Gam’ which also sounds similar to ‘gold’ which symbolizes wealth.
We made our mandarin orange sorbet and named it ‘Gam Xia’ as a form of well wishes to our customers during the festive period and also as a form of thanks for the support they have shown to us!
As we tend to consume a lot of ‘heaty’ goodies during Chinese New Year, we added bits of dried mandarin peel as it could help with digestion and reduce phelgm according to Chinese medicine, in hopes that it would help !
(Spiced Caramel Cookie)
When I was a kid, I had my first speculoos cookie during a visit to our family doctor. It was near the December period as I remembered a Christmas tree with many wrapped presents in the waiting room.
I was due for an injection of some sort and was kicking up a huge fuss over it (I hate needles). My doctor calmed me down with a speculoos cookie from his own snack stash behind his desk and promised me more if I took the jab bravely and quietly.
I went home with a big bag of speculoos cookie that day, and have always related this flavour with Christmas ever since. Hence, we released the Spectaculoos ice cream as our 2018 Xmas flavour