Kulfi: Have You Tried India's Favourite Desi Ice Cream?
Image Credit: Shutterstock, Kulfi.

Kulfi - the favourite desi ice-cream - is a sure shot hit with foodies all over our country. On a hot summer afternoon, after a decadent lunch, a kulfi is just the dessert you need before you curl up for an afternoon siesta. Kulfi originated in the 16th century during the Mughal Period. This frozen dessert comes in a variety of flavours and is generally paired with falooda. Whether you like it on a stick or in a matka, kulfi is indeed the coolest dessert to ever exist. Here are a few fun facts we bet you didn’t know about ‘cool-fie’: 

There are around over 100 flavours of kulfi 

Starting from traditional flavours like the Plain Kulfi and Pista Kulfi to unusual flavours like avocado and peanuts, there’s a flavour of kulfi for everyone! Ice-cream companies are competing to come up with a unique kulfi flavour every day. This Indian dessert has migrated to India’s neighbours and many food bloggers and street vendors in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal, etc, make a livelihood from selling it.

Kulfi is among the popular ice creams sold this summer

According to news reports, the consumption of ice cream is on an all-time high because of soaring temperatures, and kulfi is surely among the popular choices of the ice creams that are being consumed. The popularity of kulfi isn’t just limited to sales in our country. In Portland, Oregon, there’s a popsicle shop that sells various types of kulfis. The journey of the shop started with a cart that was used to sell kulfi. The popularity and sales of this dessert motivated the owners to open up a kulfi shop.

Source: Shutterstock

Don’t get deceived by the way it melts in your mouth with every bite, for your kulfi has salt in it! Adding salt lowers the freezing temperature of water, allowing the dessert to stay cooler for a longer period of time. Given the heat and the increased demand for ice creams, this is a life-saving hack for street vendors who travel through the summer around the country’s towns and cities to sell their handmade kulfis.

Kanpur’s famous Badnaam Kulfi

Everyone’s heard about Kanpur’s famous Badnaam Kulfi, but have you ever tried it yourself? The Badnaam Kulfi is very different from the frozen kulfi you’ve eaten. It is hand churned and creamy. The churning of the kulfi is done in between ice and salt. The texture of the Badnaam Kulfi resembles that of frozen rabri. This kulfi is sold in a shop named Thaggu ke Laddu in Govind Nagar, Kanpur and their marketing line is ‘Aisa koi saga nahi, jisko thaga nahi.’ The catchy one-liner became so popular that it even featured in a song in the movie Bunty Aur Babli. 

In case reading up on these interesting facts about kulfi has got you craving for a bite, here’s a recipe for how to make kulfi at home by Chef Kunal Kapoor.


Milk (full cream) - 1.25 litres/5 cups

Sugar - 70gms/ ⅓ cup

Cardamom powder (optional) - ½ tsp

Pista - handful

Method: Heat the milk and cook till it reduces to ⅓. Mix the sugar in and give it a boil. Switch off the stove and let it cool completely. Once completely cool, grind it to make it smooth. Add cardamom powder and pista. Pour inside the kulfi moulds and place in the freezer till firm. Place in the ice cream stick once it is half frozen. Freeze and enjoy!