Ice cream? Nope! It"s aisukurin. Aisukurin is a frozen snack that Kochi locals both past and present adore. Made from eggs, sugar, and powdered skim milk, it contains less than 3% milkfat. Its differences from ice cream lie in its flavor and texture. Because it"s low in fat, it has a crunchy texture like that of shaved ice and a distinctively light, refreshing taste.
The origin of the name "aisukurin" is surprisingly old: its roots lie with an 1860 delegation from Japan to America that mispronounced the term as "aisukurin." Soon after the delegation returned to Japan, ice cream was sold in Japan under that name. That"s how many believe the name stuck and items made from a combination of eggs, powdered skim milk, and the like became known as aisukurin. Although it was once sold all over Japan, it became less common as times changed. However, Aisukurin"s roots are deep Kochi. To the locals, it"s a traditional flavor, and to those from elsewhere it has a somehow nostalgic charm. Although banana is the standard flavor, there are a variety of flavors available, including strawberry, matcha, and more. Typically sold in stalls near sightseeing spots or along the roadside, aisukurin stands are easily identifiable because of the parasols they stand under. Simple to make compared to ice cream, aisukurin is easy to prepare at home.