Filipinos using ice in desserts to beat the hot weather.
Japanese entrepreneurs prior to World War II sold mitsumame (a traditional Japanese bean-based dessert) using local monggo beans and shaved ice. The resulting mongo con hielo could be ordered from Japanese sorbeterias (ice cream shops) with a dash of evaporated milk and your choice of sweet add-ons.
This dessert evolved into the halo-halo we know today: a rich blend of shaved ice, evaporated milk, fruits in syrup (bananas and jackfruit), ube halaya (more on this dessert below), mung beans, chewy sweet palm, and the occasional scoop of ice cream.
The name literally translates to “mix-mix” in Filipino: you’re supposed to mix all the ingredients together into a soupy, creamy mess before tucking in!