Popularly known as Kulfi, this Indian frozen dessert was popularised by Mughals in the 16th century. This Indian dessert gained popularity for reasons more than one. The rich, flavourful burst of conventional kulfi has many flavours, namely cardamom, pistachios, almond-pistachio, malai or cream, and sometimes rose. This is also a popular dessert across many South Asian countries such as Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Nepal and Myanmar.
Indian summer nights and a chilled matka (earthen pot) kulfi or even stick kulfi go hand in hand, quite literally. In many Indian cities, big and small, one can see kulfi vendors selling kulfi on their pushcarts; ringing a bell, to announce their arrival for people, especially kids who eagerly wait for it. Call it a respite from the scorching heat or an excuse to step out and chit-chat with neighbours, every Indian has a special kulfi memory.
Relive that sweet memory by trying out this almond-pistachio kulfi recipe at home:
1 l milk
200 gms sugar
200 gms khoya (reduced milk solids)
1 tbsp honey
2-3 pods cardamom powder (ground into a fine powder)
2 slices of milk bread (soaked in one cup milk)
2 tbsp pistachio (sliced)
2 tbsp almond (sliced)
1. Pour milk in a pan and bring it to a boil.
Note: Add a little water before pouring in the milk, so that it does not stick to it.
2. Add cardamom powder to the milk. Note: A hack to the traditional kulfi - breadcrumbs are added to thicken the milk faster. Usually the milk is reduced by stirring it continuously over a low flame.
3. Next, add the sliced pistachios to the milk.
4. Add breadcrumbs into the milk.
5. Crumble the khoya and add to the milk.
6. Pour in some honey towards the end and keep stirring the milk on low heat.
7. Once the milk is reduced and thickens, allow it to cool down and bring it to room temperature. Transfer the milk into a kulfi mould and put it in the freezer.
8. Freeze the kulfi for at least 6 hours. Remove from the freezer. To unmould - drop the mould in room temperature water for about 20 to 30 seconds. Then place the mould on a clean surface and remove the kulfi.
Slice and serve with a garnish of some rose syrup or chopped nuts.
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