Lately I've been craving all kinds of Persian cuisine- salads, main dishes, desserts, drinks. Since I was in the mood for something sweet, I decided to make one of my favorite Persian desserts: Bastani Akbar Mashti- saffron ice cream with rose water and pistachios. For me, one of the very best parts about eating this ice cream is the chunks of frozen cream. With every bite, I anticipate this cold cube and am disappointed when there isn't one. But another reason to love this bastani is that Iranians say saffron makes you laugh a lot! Feeling down? Whip yourself up a batch. Saffron has the Persian seal of approval to make you laugh! Try this simple recipe:
What you do:
1. Pour the whipping cream in a thin layer in a pan and freeze it.
2. Dissolve about 1/3 tsp of saffron in 2-3 tbs of boiling water. Cover it and let it brew about 10-15 minutes so it has a nice color and flavor.
3. Take the frozen whipping cream and break it up into small pieces.
4. Once the ice cream is softened, combine it with the saffron, about 1-2 tbs (or to your liking) of rose water, pistachios, and the pieces of frozen cream.
5. Put it back in the freezer for a couple of hours and then serve!
Nooshe jan! (bon appetit)
Tip: Use vanilla ice cream that is white (not yellow) so the saffron colors it nicely.
Also try serving it Persian style by putting some between two wafers, just like a sandwich!
What is your favorite Persian dessert?