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  • Writer's pictureheutemalindisch

Kesar Pista Kulfi - Indian style saffron and pistachio ice cream

Kulfi is an Indian traditional ice cream originating from the Indian subcontinent of the 16th century. This frozen sweet is made from thickened milk flavored with saffron and/or nuts. The milk dessert is frozen in cylindrical molds made of metal. In India, it is often sold by kulfiwallahs (street vendors).

Kulfi is much denser and creamier than ice cream. Unlike ice cream, kulfi is not whipped and contains no egg, resulting in a firm, dense dessert like frozen custard. The density of kulfi causes it to melt more slowly than ice cream.

Saffron and Pistachios Kulfi is one of India's most famous kulfis because it brings together the two most elegant ingredients on the Indian spice shelf. Since ground pistachios are not found on every supermarket shelf, I grind my pistachios to a fine powder in a coffee or spice grinder. It also works with a blender, but then the nuts become coarser.

Servings: 6 -8 Portions


  • 300 ml condensed milk

  • 300 g cream

  • 120 g sugar

  • 100 g pistachios, finely ground

  • 1 pinch of saffron threads


Place the condensed milk, cream and sugar in a saucepan and bring to the boil over medium heat, stirring regularly. Make sure that the mixture does not stick to the bottom of the saucepan.

Once the mixture rises, reduce the heat.

Add in the ground pistachios and saffron.

Simmer for 5 minutes.

Remove from heat and transfer to a bowl and let cool to room temperature.

Divide the cream into kulfi moulds or freezer-safe containers and freeze for at least 8 hours.

Remove kulfi from freezer, invert onto plates and garnish with chopped pistachios and serve.


  • To remove the kulfi from the mould, just before serving, dip the moulds briefly in hot water, invert onto a plate and tap the bottom of the mould vigorously once.

  • The quantity of ingredients can easily be increased if you want more kulfi.

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