Kesar Pista Kulfi

5 from 2 votes

This Kesar Pista Kulfi Recipe is a treat to your taste buds. Made using reduced milk, saffron, cardamom and nuts, this homemade dessert recipe is sure to please your palate. Here is how to make it at home.

Here are some more Indian Dessert Recipes, that are hard to resist – Mango Kulfi, Mango Falooda, Thandai Phirni, Thandai Kheer, Fruit Custard and Basundi.

About this Recipe

My love for Kulfi is never ending and I have always enjoyed homemade Kulfis more than the outside ones. And therefore this time to celebrate a special occasion, I made traditional homemade Kesar Pista Kulfi at home.

Prepared with milk and flavoured with Saffron and Dry Fruits, this Kulfi will surely satisfy your sweet cravings and will make you want for more.

This Kulfi is very popular in North Indian states and you can often find many street carts selling this delicious Indian Ice Cream, during the hot days of Summer. Just a bite of this deliciousness will give you instant relief from the scorching heat.

While some serve it as it is, some of the Kulfi Shops and Restaurants serve it with a handful of falooda and a drizzle of rose syrup on top.

This Kesar Pista Kulfi is a must at my home in Summers, and we often indulge in this Kulfi after our weekend meals.

This Kesar Pista Kulfi is,

  • Yummy
  • Easy to make
  • Made with fewer ingredients
  • Perfect for your weekend dessert
  • Apt for those scorching Summer days

Ingredients to be used

Milk – To make this Kulfi, use Full Fat or Full Cream milk, as it results in creamy Kulfi. Low Fat Milk or Skim Milk will not give you good results.

Pistachios – This Ice cream is flavoured with crushed Pistachios. It adds a nice crunch in the creamy texture of the Kulfi.

You can also add in other chopped dry fruits such as Almonds, Cashews etc.

Saffron – Saffron or as it is called Kesar, adds a nice flavour and gives Kulfi a slight hint of yellow colour.

Cardamom Powder & Rose Water – These two are a must ingredients in my Kulfi recipes, as it adds a beautiful flavour and aroma, giving this Kulfi a rich and royal touch.

You can also add crushed cardamom seeds instead of cardamom powder in this recipe.

Sugar – You can adjust the amount of sugar according to your taste and preference. If you like it to be more sweet, increase the amount of sugar.

You can add some Khoya to make the kulfi even richer.

Step By Step Recipe

Blend almonds, cashew nuts and pistachio coarsely in a blender.

Heat milk in a heavy bottom pan.

Simmer the heat when it comes to a boil.

Add saffron threads.

Let it cook till it is reduced to almost ½.

Stir the mixture at regular intervals or else it can burn at the bottom and give a very foul taste.

Add the dry fruits mixture in the milk.

Add condensed milk.

Dissolve cornflour in a little water and add it to the milk.

Add the fresh cream and cook for another 2-3 minutes.

Remove the pan from heat and cool the mixture.

Pour the mixture in kulfi moulds and freeze till set.

Remove it from the moulds by dipping the mould in water for a few seconds.

Garnish with almond and pistachio slivers.

Serve immediately.

Frequently asked Questions:

How is Kulfi different from Ice Cream?

It is an Indian version of ice cream which is made using thickened milk, saffron and is loaded with dry fruits.

The sweetness and the earthy flavors that come by thickening the milk make this traditional Indian dessert irresistible.

It is denser than ice cream and hence it does not melt as fast as ice cream does. Made with pure saffron and freshly ground almond and pistachios, it is perfect for dessert during the summers and is healthy too!

With all the dry fruits and Kesar used for making it, this dessert makes you feel nothing less than a royal.

It is served with flour noodles called Falooda (Falauda) in many parts of India. But feel free to serve it without them as well.

How to make sure Kulfi doesn’t have Ice Crystals?

Thickening the milk well reduces the formation of ice crystals in kulfi.

Make sure the mixture is properly cooled before you pour it in the moulds. Close the lid of the mould tightly to avoid the formation of ice crystals in the kulfi. Also, make sure to freeze it at the lowest temperature possible.

For best result, empty the freezer as much as you can before freezing it so that the chances of ice crystal formation are very low.

How to make it with condensed milk?

You can add condensed milk in this recipe and make the process of thickening the milk faster.

Just add 1 cup of condensed milk in the below recipe once the milk has reduced to half and skip the sugar.

I used Milkmaid, you can use whichever is available where you live. You can taste the mixture once the milk is reduced to desired consistency and then add some sugar if necessary.  

How to make it using bread slices?

If you are in a hurry, adding a few bread slices soaked in milk reduces the thickening time of kulfi.
Just remove the corners of the bread and soak it in some milk. Mash it after 15-20 minutes and add in the reducing milk.

How long it takes Kulfi to set?

Freeze the Kulfi for about minimum 5 hours. For the best results, serve it after freezing for 12 hours.

Variations

Traditionally, Kulfi is flavored with cardamom and saffron and has crunch from nuts like almonds and pistachios but these days people have started to make variations of this delicious dessert.

Fruit Kulfi – You can add Fruit Puree such as Mango, Strawberry, Chikoo, Orange, Pineapple, Banana, Apple etc to make delicious Fruit Kulfis.

I have also come across some interesting varieties such as Paan and Chocolate Kulfis.

Pro Tips By Neha

Make sure to use full-fat milk to make it. Do not use skim milk or low fat milk for this dessert.

Reduce the milk on medium-low heat. It will prevent it from burning at the bottom.

Keep stirring continuously while reducing the milk to prevent it from burning.

Use a heavy bottom pan to make it.

You can add flavorings of your choice and make Mawa, Mango, or Paan Kulfi instead of this. Even Chikoo and Guava flavors are getting very popular these days.

You can add khoya in my recipe and fasten the thickening process keeping the taste intact.

Serve this dessert with falooda which is a very popular combination. Boil the falooda until softened and top the kulfi with it.

Falooda comes in various flavors these days. Saffron is my fav.

You can also top this dessert with syrups like rose, khus, etc.

Set it in fun molds to make it exciting for kids.

If you like your kulfi creamy and not pieces of malai coming in your mouth, blend the thickened milk in a blender once it has reached room temperature and then pour it in the molds.

Do not blend the cold milk otherwise, the butter will separate from it.

Some people also add powdered bread slices in their kulfi mixture to thicken it faster.

You might also like:

Rasmalai

Basundi

Rabdi

Saffron Milk

Kulfi recipe
5 from 2 votes

Kesar Pista Kulfi Recipe

This Kesar Pista Kulfi Recipe is a treat to your taste buds. Made using reduced milk, saffron, cardamom and nuts, this homemade dessert recipe is sure to please your palate. Here is how to make it.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 1 hour
Total: 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 6 people

Ingredients 

  • 1 litre Full Fat Milk
  • 20-25 strands Saffron (Soaked in 2 tablespoon milk)
  • 3 tablespoon Sugar
  • ¼ cup Pistachio (Chopped)
  • ½ teaspoon Cardamom Powder
  • ½ teaspoon Rose water
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Instructions 

  • Add the milk in a heavy bottomed pan.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Let the milk simmer on low heat, till it has reduced to ⅓rd.
  • Add the saffron soaked in milk, sugar, pistachios, rose water and cardamom powder and mix well.
  • Remove the pan from heat and cool to room temperature.
  • Fill the thickened milk in the kulfi mould and freeze overnight.
  • To remove the kulfi from the mould, dip the mould in warm water and pull out the Kulfi.
  • Cut into slices and serve immediately.

Notes

Make sure to use full-fat milk to make it.
Reduce the milk on medium-low heat. It will prevent it from burning at the bottom.
Keep stirring continuously while reducing the milk to prevent it from burning.
Use a heavy bottom pan to make it.
You can add flavourings of your choice and make Mawa, Mango, or Paan Kulfi instead of this. Even Chikoo and Guava flavors are getting very popular these days.
You can add khoya in my recipe and fasten the thickening process keeping the taste intact.
Serve this dessert with falooda which is a very popular combination. Boil the falooda until softened and top the kulfi with it.
Falooda comes in various flavours these days. Saffron is my fav.
You can also top this dessert with syrups like rose, khus etc.
Set the kulfi in fun moulds to make it exciting for kids.
If you like your kulfi creamy and not pieces of malai coming in your mouth, blend the thickened milk in a blender once it has reached to room temperature and then pour it in the moulds.
Do not blend the cold milk otherwise butter will separate from it.
Some people also add powdered bread slices in their kulfi mixture to thicken it faster.

Nutrition

Calories: 62kcal, Carbohydrates: 9g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 2g, Sodium: 5mg, Potassium: 109mg, Sugar: 6g, Vitamin A: 40IU, Vitamin C: 3mg, Calcium: 9mg, Iron: 0.6mg
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16 Comments

  1. Hi, I want to try this recipe. Just have a small question. You have used raw pistachios which have been chopped. What is I roast them a little and then chop them,? Would that give a better taste or using raw is fine?

  2. Neha,

    I tried ur recipe, have 2 doubts.

    1. The sweetness was little less and to make it more rich, I added 100ml of condensed milk and 3 tsps of powdered sugar at the end and mixed well. the sweetness seemed to be comparatively lesser after the mixture was frozen.

    2. I followed the instructions given above, but felt that the icecream has some ice crystals.I do not have an icecream maker

    Is there anyway to improve the richness and get rid of the ice crystals, solving these 2 issues i feel would make it more closer to the store bought ones.

    Thanks
    Jayanthi

    1. Jayanthi. Thnx for trying the recipe. Sweetness is something very personal. We like a little less sweet in our desserts but if you like yours more sweet, feel free to add some sugar in the mixture. As for the ice crystals, if you reduce the milk very nicely until it is nicely thick and creamy, you will not have crystals in the kulfi and your kulfi will be more rich as well. Do try the recipes keeping the tips in mind> I am sure it will come out good 🙂