• Pistachio kulfi (John Laurie)Source: John Laurie

Delicately flavoured with Indian spices, such as cardamom, saffron and cinnamon, and sometimes other ingredients like rose and mango, kulfi has a dense, rich texture that will have you coming back for more.






Skill level

Average: 3 (111 votes)


  • 2 litres milk
  • 165 g (¾ cup) caster sugar
  • 70 g (½ cup) blanched pistachios, finely ground
  • 8 cardamom pods
  • organic dried rose petals (see Note) or slivered pistachios, to serve

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Freezing time 4 hours

You will need 8 x 125 ml kulfi moulds (see Note) for this recipe. Substitute dariole moulds. Allow at least 4 hours to freeze the kulfi.

Place milk in a large saucepan over medium–high heat and bring to the boil. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes, then reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally to prevent a skin forming and the milk from scorching, for 50 minutes or until reduced by just over half; don’t boil the mixture.

Add sugar, pistachios and cardamom, and cook, stirring, for a further 10 minutes or until slightly thickened. Pour mixture into a bowl set in an iced-water bath and stir until mixture cools to room temperature (about 5 minutes). Remove and discard cardamom.

Fill 8 x 125 ml kulfi moulds, with milk mixture, leaving 1cm at the top, screw on lid and place in the freezer for 4 hours or until frozen. (If using dariole moulds, cover surface of mixture with plastic wrap, then freeze.)

Remove kulfi from freezer, hold moulds in a tea towel soaked in warm water, then carefully run a small palette knife around the inside of each mould. Turn out kulfi onto a plate and scatter over rose petals or pistachios to serve.


• Kulfi moulds are available from Indian food shops. 
• Rose petals are available from selected spice shops. Alternatively, pick and dry your own petals from pesticide-free roses.


Photography by John Laurie.


As seen in Feast magazine, Jan 2012, Issue 5.