Contemporary chefs are experimeting with layered desserts in glasses and using avant garde flavors such as rose, cardamom, pistachio. Well, in India Falooda is a dessert that modern chefs would love to experiment with.
Flooda has wonderours layers consisting of pure ice at the bottom, layered with wheat or cellophene noodles, then kulfi or icecream, then milk and little soaked black basil or tukmaria seeds and topped with scented sweet rose syrup. It is a kalidescope of colors, textures, tastes and temperatures. In order to compete for business flaoodas are offered in various color noodles and sprinkled with slivered almonds or pistachios and garnished with real pounded pure silver. Bombayites are crazy about Flaoods and cool themseves down by digging into the slurpy, cool, creamy, chewy drinky dessert.
Falooda is an ancient dessert (that came to India from Iran along with original Iranians - the Zorastrians) that has the above elements. Falooda is enjoyed on the 21st of March or Spring Equinox and was widely celebrated in Iran. The Irani Zoroastrians or Parsis celebrate this day to honor Jamshedji Navroze an ancient Iranian King. Today falooda is served in the old Irani restaurants in Colaba, Bombay.
Similar cold drink desserts are found in South and Southeast Asia, such as che ba mau in Vietnam, cendol in Malaysia, and halohalo in Philippines.
Note:ONLY 1 tbsp. of tukmaria or basil seeds are needed. They need to be soaked and will swell up to many, many times their size.
Experiment with your own recipe with cooked noodles, icecream or jelly or mango puree, soaked basil seeds, milk and fruit syrup - rose is traditional but saffron and vanilla may be used. Or you may use our Almond, Saffron, Cardamom Sugar.