I have finally succumbed to the Kulfi madness that afflicts all Indian food bloggers in summer and made Malai Kulfi. 🙂 And I am so glad that I did!
Before I delve into the goodness of this creamy frozen Indian dessert, there is a story I would like to share with you.
Some decades ago, we moved into our present home. In those days, our area was still in the “upcoming areas” category and our apartment complex was still under development. So lights in the compound were few and far between. The neighbouring apartment complex was also under construction.
Every night, at about 9 PM, a Kulfi-wallah (a vendor of Kulfi) would visit our area. This was the age before mass refrigeration and this Kulfi-walle Chacha-ji used to carry his wares on his head in an earthern pot filled with ice and atop his pot was a small oil-lit lamp. I guess it lit his path and also let the watchmen aware of his presence. Because of the poor lighting, all we could see of him made him seem like some white-clad apparition with flame on its head. We, of course, heard a plaintive Eiiiiiiiiiiiii, which was actually the trailing end of his signature cry Kulfiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!
My father occasionally got us Kulfi but we kids never knew where it came from (or at least, I did not). My parents were very strict about indulging us with “outside food” aka food that is not homemade. (This was pretty much de rigueur while growing up for my generation.)
Anyway to get back to the story, my brother—a precocious 4-year old at that time— somehow figured out that this apparition was the Kulfi-wallah. One Saturday he decided to pester my parents into getting us some Kulfi. As soon as we finished dinner, he hung around in the balcony and when he spotted the Kulfi-walle Chacha-ji, he called out to my Mom. The innocent soul that she was, Amma tried (in vain, of course) to convince my brother that it was a Bogeyman. No, no, my bro was too smart to fall for that.
He actually managed to get my father to call the Kulfi-walle Chacha-ji home and get us some Kulfi! After this incident, every time my bro felt my parents were trying to hoodwink him, he would promptly trot out the Kulfi story. 😀 😀
While the days of the travelling Kulfi-walle Chacha-ji are over, we still have a handcart that sells wonderful kulfi pulling up at the apartment complex gate every night and yes, we do still love to indulge in ourselves occassionally!
Coming back to the Kulfi recipe, when I read how easy it was to make Malai Kulfi with condensed milk, I simply had to try it and I hope you do too.
For my non-Indian friends, Kulfi is a sort of dense, no-churn Indian ice-cream.
How to Make Malai Kulfi
Cooking Time: 30 to 45 Minutes
Freezing Time: 3 to 4 Hours
4 Large Kulfi Moulds
4 Small Kulhads (Teracotta/Earthen Cups)
4 Small Bowls
- Sweetened Condensed Milk – 200 ml
- Milk – 2 Cups
- Milk Powder – 1/3 Cup
- Sugar – 2 tbsp (optional)
- Crushed Pistachios, Cashews, and Almonds – 1 tbsp for Garnish (optional)
- In a heavy-bottomed vessel, dissolve the milk powder in milk till there are no lumps.
- Add the condensed milk and mix well.
- If you are using sugar, add it now and mix well.
- Over medium flame, cook the mix while stirring constantly till it reduces to 2/3 of the original volume.
- Let the Kulfi mix cool completely.
- Pour into Kulfi moulds, Kulhads or Bowls.
- Cover with cling film. (Kulfi moulds normally have screw-on lids so you do not need cling film.)
- Freeze for 3 to 4 hours.
- Garnish with some crushed nuts.
- Enjoy chilled.
- If you are using Kulfi moulds, roll the mould between your palms for a minute or two and you will find that the kulfi slides out.
- You could also leave the kulfi mould out at room temperature for 5 to 7 minutes.
- You could also add some cardamom (elaichi) powder to the kulfi while cooking. I did not.
- If you are using skimmed milk, use about 300 ml of condensed milk and cook till the quantity reduces by 1/2.
- Do remember to cover the open mouth of the moulds with a cling film. I forgot and had some ice-crystals on the surface. 🙂