New Hampshire Slanguage: Frappe

New Hampshire natives, and others in New England

prefer to call a milkshake, a “frappe.”  It is one of my favorite “slanguage” words.

The word itself appears to be either French or Greek in origin, and became popularly used in New England around the late 1800s into the early 1900s.  This exactly matches the time frame in which New England experienced a great influx of immigrants from both the countries of Canada (many of whom were French-speaking) and from Greece. These newly arrived families quickly found jobs at the many mills that had sprung up all along the Merrimack valley in New Hampshire and Massachusetts.

Originally the “frappe” was a fruit-based beverage which was poured over shaved ice, and served as a dessert or appetizer.  The word itself apparently originates from the French “frapper,” meaing “to strike.”  If you’ve ever made shaved ice the old fashioned way, then this definition won’t confuse you at all.

Later, a frappe came to mean a blended, iced coffee drink with milk added. Eventually it became a name for any blended milk or ice cream-based drink, usually with a flavored syrup added. Often a straw is an accessory used to drink down to the last drop.

Today a mixture of cold milk with syrup or flavoring, either stirred or mixed in a blender, is known as a MILK SHAKE.   Only the version where ICE CREAM is added is called a FRAPPE.  Please do not confuse the two.

My favorite is the chocolate frappe….  Do you have a favorite or an unusual flavor?
You have to wonder who might like a  pumpkin ice cream frappe.

If all of this is making you hungry, visit Amy Kane’s blog, Atlantic Ave, and see all the great events and food being served on New Hampshires seacoast.

The Omnipotent Poobah says, “Never let the dog get too close to your ice cream cone.”  I say, never let your husband too close to your frappe.

And speaking of ice….


P.S. Did you know that the the first soda fountain patent was granted to Samuel Fahnestock in 1819.

– Yankee Magazine: The Difference Between A Frappe and a Milkshake

Recipe for a Greek Frappe

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