Stroll down the crowded beaches of Mumbai & a staple that one is bound to encounter is the Kulfi Falooda, a combination of milkshake & sundae with various colors, flavors & textures all combined into a tall chilled glass.
This Indian summer dessert is traditionally made with Kulfi (Indian Ice cream) combined with sweet rose syrup and milk. and topped off with a variety of soaked basil seeds (very similar to chia seeds) and arrow root vermicelli.
One of the biggest summertime favorites at home is a variation of this dessert using Pistachio Flavored Ice cream. (with kids, it always seems like the more colorful the sundae, the better!)
The basil seeds in the recipe are referred to as 'tukmaria' and can be found in Indian grocery stores. They're black in color and resemble chia seeds in size and shape. As with chia seeds, when soaked in water, they 'swell' up to form a jelly like covering over the seeds. The covering over the tukmaria however is much firmer & translucent compared to chia, but the crunchy texture of the bite is identical. In a pinch, feel free to substitute with chia seeds.
Mung bean thread noodles from the oriental grocery stores make a fabulous substitute for the arrow root vermicelli.
The ideal instrument to polish this off would be one of those long straws with a spoon at one end.
scoops Haagen Dazs Pistachio Ice cream
Rooh Afza Rose syrup (from any Indian Grocery store)
Heat 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Add the Mung bean noodles & allow to cook for ~ 5 minutes till soft. Strain & transfer the noodles into the remaining cup of cold water. Add the Tukmaria or chia seeds into the cold water along with the confectioners sugar. Stir and set aside for ~ 1/2 hr. The seeds will swell up and absorb most of the water. You will have way more than you need for just one serving.
To assemble the falooda float: Pour 2 tablespoons of the rose flavored syrup into a tall glass. Add the Ice cream.
Using a slotted spoon or a tea strainer, scoop the mung bean noodles and the seeds from the cold water. shake gently to let any excess water drip. and spoon about 2-3 tablespoons of basil seed and noodles over the ice cream.
Pour the cold milk & seltzer (adjust the proportion of the seltzer and milk as per your personal preference).
Add whipped cream over the float and garnish with the pistachios. Drizzle with extra rose syrup if you desire and slurp it up!.