Cooking with Mom: Kulfi – Indian Ice Milk Pops

This is the last of my cooking with mom recipes for a while.  My Mummy has gone back to her house :(.  I was whining to Ria about missing my mom and she said to me with a big smile on her face, “Mummy, you can still have fun with me”.  Wise, endearing, mildly annoying and selfish, all at the same time.  “How would you like it if your Mummy left?” I wanted to say but instead I just said in a super whiny voice, “But, but I want my Mummy!”  Nice little role reversal.  She kept grinning.  Sarcasm wasted.

We have made a ton of ice-cream this summer (strawberry/mango buttermilk, condensed milk ice-cream and several others), so I loaned my ice-cream maker to my cousin just to get it out of the house.  Fortunately (or unfortunately), kulfi can be made without one.  If you don’t have popsicle molds, you can just freeze this in little cups or ramekins.  I am also going to try to make these in my fancy Zoku Quick Pop Maker.  This recipe has great sentimental value and comes from my grandmother and will be made over over again.  It is one of those recipes that Dadi (grandma) will always make better.

For a more adult version (since it has tea in it), I am intrigued by and will be trying out real soon: Aarti Party’s Creamy Pistachio Pops.  Sigh…I don’t know why I bothered to get the ice-cream maker out of the house.

Kulfi – Indian Ice Milk Pops

Regarded as an Indian ice-cream but more like frozen milk.  Unlike ice-cream, kulfi is not churned (hence no ice-cream maker required).  Kulfi is dense and icy rather than aerated and light.

Makes 4+ popsicles


4 cups whole milk

½ cup sugar (try it with less)

¼ cup slivered almonds or chopped pistachios (optional)

10-12 cardamom pods shelled and ground into a powder


  1. Simmer the milk for about 40-50 minutes, stirring from time to time
  2. Add the sugar and simmer for another 5 minutes
  3. Remove from heat and add the cardamom powder and nuts, if using
  4. Cool and pour into popsicle mold or little cups
  5. Freeze overnight

Condensed Milk Vanilla Ice-cream!

Condensed milk was a childhood favorite of mine.  I am so glad I (sort of) outgrew it.  I have fond memories of begging my mother for a spoon of cold condensed milk from the refrigerator as dessert.  She would make a can last forever and ration it out to me super slowly. (She was a good mother otherwise).  Somehow condensed milk is not as big in America as it is in Asian countries.  Strangely, my “American” kid is not so fond of it.  I tried to pass on my childhood addiction to her but it did not really work (go figure!).  However, this condensed milk ice-cream she did like….I may just be a little bit crazy to want her to like this super-sweet stuff :).

My ice-cream maker is getting a ton of use these days much to my visiting mother’s chagrin.  I think it is her fault for eating it all in one sitting and then blaming her grandchild for eating it.  Upcoming flavors I want to try are roasted banana, peach with cardamom and pineapple (mom doesn’t know).

I have been obsessing about making condensed milk vanilla ice-cream (inspired by this from NYTimes) for quite a while and finally pulled the trigger recently. I modified the recipe a little bit and thought I was headed for disaster but it worked out well.

If you like sweet, very sweet and if you like condensed milk, this is a must try.  It’s awesome, creamy-silky and incredibly sinful!  Serve it with salted roasted pecans for a nice counterpoint.

Condensed Milk Vanilla Ice-cream


1 cup cold heavy cream

1 tbsp pure vanilla extract

1 (14-oz) can cold sweetened condensed milk

1. Combine all ingredients and transfer to ice-cream maker and churn for 35-40 minutes

2. Transfer into a container with lid. Freeze at least 4 hours or overnight

Serve with roasted nuts…..and anything else you fancy.  Ice-cream sandwich anyone?

Taking good photos of ice-cream is impossible….this melting action took at most a minute.  I will make this again and be back with a better photo.  In the meantime, I need to finish some ice-cream!

Happy Father’s Day – Mango Buttermilk Ice-cream

My mother made an amazing and coma-inducing Indian meal for Father’s Day. Think mughlai chicken, saag paneer, mint potatoes, kidney bean curry (rajmah) and basmati rice flavored with spices (see below).

This fresh churned mango buttermilk ice-cream (variation of Strawberry Buttermilk Ice-cream) was the perfect end to a perfect meal.  It tasted like mango lassi transformed into an ice-cream.  There is something very satisfying about eating ice-cream right after it is made.  Plus the kids really enjoyed watching it being churned in the ice-cream maker and of course eating it!

Mango Buttermilk Ice Cream

2 cups low-fat buttermilk

1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk

1 cup mango puree

1 tbsp sugar (optional – depends on sweetness of mangoes/mango puree)

pinch of ground cardamom (optional)

Whisk all the ingredients together and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes or more.  Transfer it into an ice cream maker following the manufacturers directions.

Serve it soft right away or put it in the freezer for 10-15 minutes to set up a little bit more.  We ate it right away!!  All of it!