Kulfi – The Indian Ice Cream

When ice cream mature it becomes a Kulfi
When ice cream matures it becomes Kulfi

“Kulfi ice cream nahin hoti, kulfi, kulfi hoti hai” – kulfi is not an ice cream; kulfi is simply kulfi. That is how most of us begin our journey with this yummy dairy based frozen dessert. A lot of us believe that kulfi is made more for the Indian summer than ice cream, due to its higher melting point. This is true, kulfi is thick because it is not whipped cream, it is wholesome and the air content in a Kulfi is nothing close to what it is in an ice cream. You can enjoy kulfi by sinking your teeth deep into it and it will still not fall on your shirt.

If you don’t wish to work hard in reducing milk to 1/3 by yourself in your kitchen, we suggest go ahead and buy kulfi from a kulfiwala. All these quick-fix options for making kulfi compromise massively on taste and flavor; avoid it if you can. If you really want your kulfi to come out well, I suggest you go the whole hog.

For good kulfi, you need whole milk (4% variety) and reduce it to 1/3. While you are reducing the milk, nothing stops you from tinkering with its flavor; cardamom powder in this case works best.

Here is my recipe of “Dry-fruit Kulfi”


  •  3 Litres Whole Milk (4% fat)
  • 1 teaspoon green cardamom powder
  • 6 strands of saffron, one for each mold
  • 6 earthen molds
  • Sugar to taste, 40 to to 60 grams
  • 60 to 100 grams finely chopped pistachios and almonds

How to make Kulfi

  • Select a heavy bottomed kadhai/ wok. Bring the milk to a boil and let it simmer while stirring it continuously, till it is reduced to 1/3 of its original quantity.
  • Add sugar and allow it to integrate fully with the milk.
  • Add dry-fruits. Don’t stop stirring and don’t raise the heat.
  • Add cardamom powder.
  • Check sugar.
  • Add saffron strands, allow for color to change and check aroma.
  • Remove kadhai from the burner, and allow it to cool.
  • Transfer mixture to molds, do not fill them till the brim. Insert sticks. Put lids over them and make them airtight.
  • Freeze them.
  • Keep molds in water for a couple of minutes to allow for easy transfer.