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As Omaha’s Aksarben Village continues to grow and develop, independently run businesses continue to launch in the area.
Freezing, is the newest locally owned business that recently opened in July. The shop serves up Thai rolled ice cream.
“I always like to try something unique, something different,” said Feng Lin, owner of Freezing.
Lin, who has a background in the restaurant industry, said she first saw the frosty treats in New York City and wanted to bring the dessert to Omaha. The newness of Aksarben and its growth is what drew Lin to the location.
“It’s a college area and attracts many families with all the farmers markets, festivals and activities it brings,” Lin said.
Compared to popular ice cream shops such as Cold Stone, this isn’t your traditional ice cream. Customers can watch the entire process. The milky, liquid base goes onto what Lin calls a freezing grill. Employees add the mix-ins such as strawberries, chocolate sauce and Nutella. Within seconds, the formula forms into an icy consistency. The thin, rolled sheets of ice cream are served up with whipped cream and sprinkles.
“This is my new favorite ice cream shop,” said frequent customer Sara Blum. “Getting to watch the process of mixing and chopping until it turns frozen into ice cream is so hypnotizing and fun to see.”
This frozen dessert originated in Southeast Asia under the name “Thai rolled ice cream” or “stir-fried ice cream.” The device used to create the dessert is a chilled plate that can run on electricity or be cooled by liquid nitrogen and can maintain a temperature of -20 degrees. Once the chilled plate reaches -20 degrees, the milky mixture will reach the freezing temperature to form into the semi-solid rolled dessert.
“People love new and exciting treats. When I see this ice cream, I think ‘Wow, this is really fun’,” Lin said. “Thanks to the popularity of Aksarben, there’s a lot of foot traffic that brings in many customers.”
Since its opening, the business has a steady stream of customers with lines out the door and endless Instagram posts showing off the fun new treat. Lin said with the success of her business in the Aksarben area, she plans to open more locations around the Omaha metro.