Persian Ice Cream with Saffron & Rosewater

by My Persian Kitchen on May 29, 2009

Saffron & Rosewater Ice Cream1 (Medium)

Let it be known that I am a bit snobbish when it comes to ice cream.  I simply love gelato.  American ice cream on the other hand? I am not too fond of. I will eat it, but the truth is that for me gelato is so much better. It is important to say that the gelato that I am talking about is not the type that you buy here. Oh NO! I am talking about the real thing, the one made on Italian soil. You don’t believe me that the gelato in Italy tastes better? Just ask The Sous Chef. Before we set foot in Italy I swore that I was going to have gelato every day. He thought I was blowing smoke out of my behind when I kept on telling him that there is no gelato like Italian gelato…until he had  his first taste of real Italian gelato. Guess who actually ended up having gelato every day? That’s right The Sous Chef!

Now that I have established my love for gelato, I also would like to share with you all that Persian Ice Cream holds a very special place in my heart. I love the fact that every bite is a delicious blend of saffron and rosewater.  And I love it even more when the ice cream is placed between two wafers and eaten like a sandwich. YUM!

Today’s recipe is my **own** homemade version of Persian Ice Cream. It is sooo soo good and I am proud to say that it is my second attempt at making ice cream. I hope you will enjoy it as much as we have here!!!


1 1/2 cups of milk

1 cup of cream

1/2 cup of sugar + 1 tsp

1 pinch of sugar

3 tbsp of rosewater

3 egg yolks

1/4 cup of shelled pistachios

Saffron & Rosewater Ice Cream2 (Small)

In a sauce pan add sugar and milk.

Saffron & Rosewater Ice Cream3 (Small)

Then add cream and warm it all up on medium heat.

Saffron & Rosewater Ice Cream4 (Small)

Give it a stir to make sure that the sugar dissolves. Make sure it does not boil. Once the mixture is nice and hot turn it off and remove from the stove.

Saffron & Rosewater Ice Cream5 (Small)

Place 1 tsp of sugar with saffron in a small mortar and grind until the saffron threads turn into powder.

Saffron & Rosewater Ice Cream6 (Small)

Add the sugar and saffron to the milk mixture. Add rosewater. Give it all a stir. Let it cool down. Place in the fridge for 4 hours or over night.

Saffron & Rosewater Ice Cream8 (Small)

During the time that the mixture rests the flavors will blend. So make sure you don’t skip this step. Warm up the mixture on low heat.

Saffron & Rosewater Ice Cream7 (Small)

Taper in the egg yolks. This is a very important step as you don’t want to cook the eggs.  Place the eggs in a separate bowl. Slowly pouring in some of the hot mixture while continuously stirring. Then slowly pour the egg yolk mixture into the warm pan.  Make sure that you stir constantly until the mixture thickens. This should take about 10 minutes.

Saffron & Rosewater Ice Cream9 (Small)

Place some ice and water in a bowl and then add another bowl on top of it. Then place a strainer on top.  You might want to do this before you place the egg yolks in the hot mixture allowing for the smaller bowl to get nice and cold.  Strain the mixture and let it completely cool down.

Saffron & Rosewater Ice Cream10 (Small)

Place the mixture in the ice cream maker along with the pistachios and follow the manufacturer’s directions.

Saffron & Rosewater Ice Cream11 (Small)

Once the ice cream freezes remove it and place it in a air tight container. The ice cream is ready at this point. But I like to freeze mine for a couple of hours before eating.  This recipe makes 1 pint of ice cream.

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{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

Roia May 30, 2009 at 8:13 am

Yum! Thanks for making this compatible with a commercial ice cream maker. Very cool.

Persian Kitchen May 30, 2009 at 11:03 am

Oh goodness, it is soo sooo good. I was seriously impressed with myself. ;)

Faith May 30, 2009 at 3:37 pm

This looks really delicious — very light and delicate. I think I’ll make it this summer!

Persian Kitchen May 30, 2009 at 7:41 pm

Oh Faith, it is sooo sooo good. Drop me a note when you make it and let me know how you liked it! :)

nora@ffr June 1, 2009 at 10:16 am

looks mighty tasty! yumm!! A must make! m sure my kids gonna hug me for this fabulous ice cream.. thanx a lot for sharing.. will let ye know how it turnes out.. :)

Persian Kitchen June 1, 2009 at 11:18 am

I can’t wait to hear all about it Nora!

roia June 1, 2009 at 6:32 pm

Okay, so can I just say that I had my doubts up right up until the tasty end – I’d never put egg yolks in ice cream before! But sure ‘nuf, it turned into the most scrumptious ice cream my little red Cuisinart has ever produced. I’m sending you a pic called “Still Life Persian Kitchen” so you can share the moment with me when you proved my skepticism wrong.

Persian Kitchen June 1, 2009 at 8:11 pm

Deep breath. After reading your comment Roia, I am not entirely sure what to do with myself and the ego boost that you just gave me!!!! This ice cream = happiness!!!

nora@ffr June 2, 2009 at 11:18 am

the ice cream turned out great.. me and my husband loved it.. once again thank you.. my sister who is crzy about ice cream wanted this recipe.. she said she is in love with this new type.. gave her ye website for her to visit often :)

Persian Kitchen June 2, 2009 at 1:46 pm

aaww Nora, I am so happy to hear you say you liked it. I am so glad that a couple of people have tried it so far and liked it. Thanks for passing on the website and spreading the love!

Steve June 14, 2009 at 4:48 am

Hi! This looks like a great recipe to try! I was wondering how much saffron to add? Please do tell. Thank you.

Persian Kitchen June 14, 2009 at 5:54 pm

Hi Steve,

Just a few threads. Saffron goes a long way. I would say about one pinch. Let me know what you think of it once you make it!

Liz June 22, 2009 at 11:10 pm

Looks really delicious! Can’t wait to try it.
By the way, will it taste very different without the saffron?

Persian Kitchen June 23, 2009 at 8:37 am

Hello Liz,

well, the taste of the rosewater is the one that dominates, as saffron has a very delicate taste. If you leave the saffron out, the taste will be slightly different and the color will definitely be different. It will not be a gorgeous deep yellow.

Let me know how it comes out when you make it!

Jessica September 19, 2009 at 8:20 pm

HELLO! I was wondering what to do if you do not have an ice cream maker. Would it still be possible to create this ice cream?

My Persian Kitchen September 19, 2009 at 8:41 pm


Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment! You actually need an ice cream maker for this recipe. If you like ice cream, it is actually a good purchase. You will amazed how much yummier home made ice cream is!

Amineh November 9, 2009 at 7:03 pm


i have just discovered your website and i am excited to start trying some of your recipes!

would you be able to post a recipe for Persian raisin cookies? if so, that would be great!

thank you!

My Persian Kitchen November 9, 2009 at 7:43 pm

Amineh, I love those cookies myself. I will be sure to make them and post the recipe!

sheena June 15, 2010 at 1:31 am

i tried it it was how about a recpie for faloudeh??

marjan June 26, 2010 at 8:38 am

سلام من مرجان از ایران هستم و خیلی خوشحال شدم که یک طریق بستنی سنتی ما رو شما اموزش داده اید اما یک طریق دیگه هم هست که من دارم سعی می کنم پیداش کنم و اون رو براتون بفرستم در مورد غذاها و دسرها و شیرینیهای ایرانی هر چی خواستید می تونید از من بپرسید مخصوصا از شیرینیهای یزد و کرمان و خوشحال میشم که دستورغذاهاتون رو هم برای من بفرستید از شما ممنونم مرجان

My Persian Kitchen June 26, 2010 at 12:35 pm

Marjan jan, kheili mamnoon misham barayeh har dastureh ashpazieh ghazeyeh Irani. Kheili khoshal misham agar baram beferestid. Har dasturi az man lazem darin hatam ba kamaleh mail midam! :)

Elizabeth Mansouri June 28, 2010 at 8:38 pm

Hi Sanam! As I have said before, I LOVE your website! I now have a request…I did not notice a recipe for faloodeh on your site, so I went searching on the internet for one. I am attempting to make it as we speak, I am using rice vermicelli which I found at a local Korean market. I will let you know how it turns out, but I would have much more confidence in a recipe from you. My husband loves faloodeh, so I am going to surprise him. Wish me luck! And if you have an easy recipe, could you please post it? Keep up the great work! :-))

My Persian Kitchen June 29, 2010 at 10:55 am

Elizabeth, thank you once again for you kind words. I have never made faloodeh before, but I think I might have to give it a go when I get back to LA! Let me know how yours came out! :)

Nahal February 27, 2011 at 4:18 pm

Can I make this ice cream without ice cream maker?

My Persian Kitchen February 27, 2011 at 9:51 pm

Nahal, I suppose you could put it in the freezer but I don’t think it would be the same. :)

Reena March 17, 2011 at 10:38 pm

Hi!! I recently made a trip to Shiraz and Esfahan and discovered the delicious Bastani!! I want to make it .. but what if I do not have an ice cream maker?

My Persian Kitchen March 18, 2011 at 7:29 am

Reena, it’s hard to make ice cream without an ice cream maker. :(

Indian Cook in NY April 8, 2011 at 9:57 am

Looks Delicious!! Another recipe change question: Do you think this would be equally wonderful without the pistachios? I am allergic to nuts. I have the same KitchenAid ice cream maker and am always looking for new ice cream recipes for it!

My Persian Kitchen April 21, 2011 at 8:17 pm

Indian Cook in NY, you can omit the pistachio!

Sweetbrand October 23, 2012 at 3:51 pm

HI Amineh

The recipe looks great, cant wait to complete it. Can you tell me how thick it should be when I have finished stirring for ten minutes? Mine so far is thicker but not really thick.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Kind Regards


monikah November 22, 2013 at 7:38 am

this was AMAZING but i only got a tiny taste. my son LOVES saffron and gobbled the entire thing while i was searching for waffle cones. lesson learned. can i double this?

My Persian Kitchen November 25, 2013 at 10:34 am

Monikah, glad you enjoyed the ice cream. You sure can double it.

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