RAWALPINDI: You could almost always see a white kulfi cart around any corner you turned in Rawalpindi. The rich, creamy dessert was once the people’s favorite.
Made from milk, khoya, sugar and dried fruits, kulfi could attract people of any age, in any season.
Over time though, the once popular frozen delight had lost its market to new, shiny ice-cream parlours.
But kulfi lovers need not worry: the lush, gooey frozen goodies are making a major comeback.
Kulfi’s popularity goes as far back as Mughal Times. Ain-e-Akbari, the Mughal emperor Akbar’s administrative records, details the use of salt for refrigeration of the treat.
Even till a few years back, the dessert was largely famous with Nihari and Sri Paye eaters. Kulfi vendors would roam the lanes of bazaars which served heavy food. Kulfi carts were always a regular feature in Kartarpura, Bhabra Bazaar, Raja Bazaar and Saddar.
People would crave the cold, velvety dessert after a heavy meal to cool their heart burns. After years of losing out to branded ice cream, people are once again turning to the sub-continent’s answer to ice-cream.
Kulfi carts are a regular feature in Kartarpura, Bhabra Bazaar, Raja Bazaar and Saddar areas Irfan Ahmad, a kulfi shop owner at Purana Qila, said he sells around 1,000 kulfis a day.
He said his shop was very busy in the summer months with him having to keep in business from early morning to late into the night.
Mr Ahmad said they freeze kulfi the traditional way: by using a lot of crushed ice and mixing the ice in with raw salt and putting them in an ice box. He says this way the kulfi is frozen in as little as two hours which is how he caters to increased demand.
Published in Dawn, September 28th , 2015