Asian Dragon visited the SIAL Asean Manila 2016, which is a showcase of the biggest and most exciting food products and innovations in the country, and we found some of the most interesting new food and non-food finds of the year. Held at the World Trade Center throughout this week, at least 300 exhibitors showcased their products to 5000 buyers from 24 different countries.

One of our favorite finds at the fair is the tilapia ice cream, a project by the Central Luzon State University Nueva Ecija. Talking to one of its proponents, Dana Vera Cruz, we find out that CLSU have already been developing the technology since 2011 to create ice cream from tilapia fillets without the fishy aftertaste and smell. It all started when CLSU was given a grant to create a cookbook featuring tilapia recipes. The tilapia ice cream was the last-minute addition to their roster and it turned out to be the star of the cookbook. Fast forward five years, they are now ready to market the product under the name Daerrys, which is a tilapia ice cream line consisting of Original Tilapia Ice Cream, Tilapia Ice Cream Sansrival, Tilapia Ice Cream Pops, and Tilapia Ice Cream Sandwich.

Asian Dragon - The whole Tilapia ice cream line consists of ice cream cups and sandwiches

The whole Tilapia ice cream line consists of ice cream cups and sandwiches.

If you’re wondering if it’s good, oh it’s really good! Made with cultured tilapia fillets, fresh cow’s milk, nuts, and cheese, this ice cream will make you think it’s just a really good vanilla ice cream! The novelty is in the fact that it is made out of tilapia, and that the texture of the ice cream, when eaten in heaping teaspoons, feels like the flaky texture of cooked tilapia meat. Where did the tilapia taste go, you ask? Well that’s a trade secret as of now since CLSU have yet to patent their technology. But Vera Cruz hopes that with the right marketing and investments, tilapia ice cream, which is a first in the world, can bring international accord to their university and to the country.

As of now, tilapia ice cream is only available at the Chives Cafe in CLSU Nueva Ecija. One gallon will set you back 700 pesos but the smaller sandwiches are fairly affordable at 30 pesos each. If you’re interested in making this tilapia ice cream at home, you can try Vera Cruz’ easy homemade recipe for their tilapia ice cream. Of course, you won’t be able to mimic completely how CLSU is doing their ice cream but it’s fun to still give it a try.

Tilapia Ice Cream recipe

Ingredients:

1 cup tilapia fillet
Equal parts chopped walnuts and cheese (you can experiment with the kind of cheese you want)
Equal parts all-purpose cream, condensed milk, and fresh milk

Method:

  1. Steam the tilapia fillet. Flake and set aside.
  2. Chop the walnuts and dice the cheese. Set aside.
  3. Beat the all-purpose cream at medium speed for 30 minutes.
  4. Add the condensed milk and fresh milk while beating and continue until mixed completely.
  5. Add the flaked tilapia and continue beating until thick and fluffy.
  6. Add the walnuts and cheese while continuously beating to completely incorporate everything into a mixture.
    7. Freeze overnight.
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