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Ice Gola

Remembering School Days and Ice Golas

Ice Gola
Ice Gola

Now, who doesn’t like Ice Gola (Shaved Ice)? Ice gola was the thing to cool off with during the summers, when we would wait throughout the day in school, and get restless in the last period, for the bell to ring so that we could go out and have ice gola. That was part of our routine during the summers. Even the thought of having ice gola at the end of the day after school seemed refreshing in the blistering heat. And looking back, those moments when we would make a group and go to the ice golawala (shaved ice vendor)‒who even knew some of us by name‒ have become especially memorable. Everyday, we would decide during the school hours which flavour to have that day which was, let me tell you, quite a daunting task because the ice golawala was armoured with as many syrups to titillate our craving as many choices we happened to have thought inside our tiny heads. But ice gola is not for only the children to savour. It’s a delight for anyone who wants to cool off in the searing temperatures during the summers and is extremely refreshing.

So recently, when I was walking past my school after a very long time, I couldn’t resist the urge to slurp on some ice gola and, after hesitating for the duration of a moment or so, I took the plunge. The ice golawala who used to be there when we were in school wasn’t there and instead there was another person selling ice gola at the same place. When I asked him if he happened to have known him, he said ‘no’, which I found a little surprising.


Crushed ice (a handful for each gola)
Molds for the candy
Stick to hold the candy 1 (each)
Sugar syrup 1 tablespoon (each)
Salt 1 pinch (each)
Black salt (kala namak) few pinches
Sherbet syrup of choice 2-4 tablespoons


Streets vendors use an ice-crushing machine to crush the ice but you can use a blender to crush the ice at home. Or if you want to do it manually, take a few ice cubes in a cloth and crush it using a hammer or rolling pin. Mold it into a round shape when the crush is ready and make sure the centre of the crush is firm enough to hold the candy. Keep it in a cup of similar size and flavour it with the syrup of your choice. Add a pinch of salt and black salt. Your homemade ice gola is ready for you to slurp!

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