A STRANGE new food craze that started as a joke has gone viral, leaving many people baffled.
Videos of people grilling ICE cubes and seasoning them with sauces and spices have swept Chinese social media.
One user explained the new craze in his post, where ice cubes are seen spread on a grill as a chef quickly scatters seasoning and sauces over them.
The cubes, now slightly smaller and covered in a healthy dusting of spices, are placed on a tray ready to be served up.
He said “The snack is made by grilling ice over fire and covering it in sauce and spices. The form of ice can range from conventional ice cube to frozen water bottle, or even icicle.
“It can be eaten both hot and cold as long as it’s done before it melts.”
He said the strange dish, which is apparently popular in Northern China, is a “gimmick for tourists”.
The video, posted on TikTok, left people very divided and while several said it looked “good”, most were simply confused.
Many were particularly baffled over the preparation process as one asked: “It can be eaten hot or cold??? Are u sure?”
Someone else added: “I just can’t comprehend how are the ice is not melting from the heat…” [sic].
Others, referring to an older food craze for grilled pebbles, jokingly said: “Fried pebble, Grilled ice, what else? Roasted stick?”
Another complained: “First it was stir fried stones… now this…”
A separate video on the platform said the dish is apparently popular in Northern China for its spicy and salty flavour.
However they also described the strange trend as more of a gimmick among tourists than an actual delicacy.
According to local Chinese news reports, the bizarre snack was made famous after a clip was taken at a street food stall in Nanchang, Jiangxi Province.
After speaking to the man who owned the stall, local outlets reported that the craze began as a jokey way to cool people off on a hot day.
Customers unexpectedly loved the dish, and fans of the strange trend now even have to order it from him in advance.