Maybe it's time for an Alaskan vacation!! Just the other day I was down at the Asian Shopping Center(Eden Center) in Falls Church and picked up a layered dessert---with coconut milk, tapioca beads and noodles(you know what I am talking about?). A cold layered dessert is just perfect for this kind of weather- don't you think? I like to pick up new combinations of Tofu or Soy products from the Tofu store in the area but this time I went for the ice cold treat. I thought to myself-- do we always have to make dessert from scratch every time we have a sweet craving? Why not scoop up a bowl of fruits and enjoy the cool juiciness of the natural sugars? Naah!! I have been eating watermelon and cantaloupe for the last few weeks and now I would love a decadent cold treat !!
Aside from the obvious ways of dessert making, like calling your Mom for an Indian Mithai recipe or looking up a cookbook, there is a whole different way you can incorporate desserts into your diet like eating one and thinking of recreating another.... LOL!!
So here I am eating this Asian dessert when a thought occured to me. I remembered the Falooda that I made for my little girls many summers ago.... a treat not only for their eyes but also for their little tummies. I loved to see their little eyes sparkling up at the tall glasses in the fridge and immediately asking if they could start with dessert rightaway!!
1 tall glass cold Milk
1-2 ounces falooda sev or thin glass noodles
1 tspn rose extract(available in Ethnic groceries)
1 tspn of falooda seeds/takmaria seeds(available in Indian grocery stores)
RoohAfzah- 2 Tblspns
Pista or Plain Kulfi Ice cream(I used the Reena brand ice cream cups available at most Indian grocery stores
this is a must have or you can use Mango ice cream if you prefer)
When making a layered mousse, milk shake or ice cream sundae there are no restrictions on the ingredients, its almost like going to a Coldstone Creamery and picking what you would like in and on top of your ice cream. So if you are unable to find the Ethnic ingredients that I have named, no need for concern......you can use glass noodles, tapioca beads, strawberry milk and top it off with simple pistachio or plain old vanilla ice cream. Some of these ideas may sound silly but the point is just to show you how you can easily compensate the ingredients stated in a recipe with others that are readily available in your pantry and still come up with an incredibly perfect layered ice cream shake you can enjoy this time of year. Or if you prefer to make this exotic drink called Falooda, I can assure you, your taste buds and stomach will thank you for it.
Directions:1. Soak the Falooda seeds in water for at least an hour.
2. Boil the noodles in water for about 10 mins until soft. Drain and cook in a sugar and water for 5-10 mins. Add seeds and keep aside. If you can get *Roohafzah use that instead of the sugar, water and red color.
3. Add a little red coloring to the seeds and noodles mix, and allow it to cool.
4. Shake up the glass of cold milk along with the sugar, rose extract and red coloring. Mix well and cool.
5. When you are ready to serve the Falooda, take a pretty glass and add 2 Tblspn of seed/noodle mixture to the bottom.
6.Very gently pour the rose milk without shaking the noodles at the bottom
7. When the glass is fairly full, add a scoop of one of your favorite flavors of ice cream and top with a cherry. Enjoy this Exotic drink with the beautiful essence of rose.
*Roohafzah is a sweet syrup available in an Indian grocery store. It is bright red in a tall bottle and is basically a rose and other flavored syrup. This syrup may be added to milk or water for a drink in itself