Kulfi is a traditional Indian ice-cream prepared with condensed sweetened milk and various flavorings such as kesar pista, malai, rose or fruity flavors like orange, strawberry, chickoo and apple. It takes a longer time to melt in comparison to the ice-creams. Due to the slow freezing process, the formation of a smooth textured frozen dessert without the formation of water crystals is possible. The delicacy is not whipped like the ice-creams thus resulting in dense solid frozen desserts. It can easily be made at home. Some readymade mixes are also available. Kulfi recipe suggests the use of traditional earthen cups for setting the dessert, which can be replaced by aluminum or steel moulds with lids. When set, it is unmolded on a plate and garnished with falooda, nuts or fruit syrups.
Origin of Kulfi Recipe
Kulfi is believed to have originated in the Indian royal families of the Himalayan regions. Later, it became popular as matka kulfi where vendors froze the dish in kulhars or earthen cups in salted ice.
Ingredients and Method of Preparing Kulfi
Kulfi can be made with whole milk, sugar, pistachios, almonds, saffron and cardamom powder. Milk is boiled stirring occasionally till it is reduced to half and is thickened. Sugar, nuts and cardamom powder is added to the milk and cooked till the sugar dissolves. A solution of corn flour and water may be added to thicken the milk. Lastly, the liquid is garnished with saffron. Later, it is cooled and poured in the earthen or metal moulds with lids which are usually sealed with flour dough and is set for 5-6 hours. Sometimes plastic or wooden sticks may be inserted in the mould when the dish is half frozen for a stick kulfi. The moulds are kept in salted ice which results in freezing of the kulfi recipe in lesser time.
Variations in Kulfi Recipe
Instead of the addition of the nuts, a variety of fruit syrups when added to the milk may form countless variety of fruit flavored delicacy. It may include apple, mango, orange, chickoo, avocados, strawberry and litchi. While reducing the milk, khoya or cream may be added to get a richer dessert. Some other exotic variations include gulab jamun kulfi. Instead of sugar, condensed milk can be used to make a similar tasting dessert.
Kulfi when set is unmolded on the serving dish. The deliciousness is enriched when served in earthen cups. It is cut to pieces and garnished with rose syrup and falooda. Extra flavoring can be done with cardamom powder and nuts. In case of any fruit kulfi, garnishing is done with fruit syrup and pieces of fruits.
Some Health Facts Related to Kulfi
The use of whole milk makes kulfi a high calorie dessert with high fat and carbohydrate content. Having a high sugar content it is not advisable for the diabetic patients. Some alternative variations of kulfi recipe can be followed with sugar free and low fat milk.