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+ servings

Bastani Sonati

Omid Roustaei, The Caspian Chef
Saffron and rosewater ice cream
5 from 20 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Cooling time 2 hrs
Total Time 2 hrs 25 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine Iranian, Persian
Servings 1.5 Quartz


  • 2 cups heavy cream divided
  • 3 cups whole milk divided
  • 3 tablespoons arrow root, or corn starch
  • 1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon mastic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons rosewater
  • 2 tablespoons raw pistachios coarsely chopped


  • Pour 1/2 cup of heavy cream into a small flat plate or bowl and place in the freezer for about an hour until frozen solid.
  • Combine 1/3 cup of milk with the arrow root in a small mixing bowl. Stir until completely smooth and set aside.
  • Using a mortar and pestle, grind the saffron threads to a fine powder and set aside.
  • Combine the remaining milk and heavy cream, sugar, mastic powder, salt, and vanilla in a large saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer over medium-high heat, about 10 minutes. Be sure to stir the mixture frequently to avoid any milk crusting on the bottom.
  • Reduce the flame to low when the milk starts to steam, but well before it comes to a boil.
  • Add the ground saffron and rosewater to the saucepan and stir. The milk mixture should turn a vibrant golden color and become quite aromatic.
  • Stir the arrow root and milk mixture one more time and add it to the saucepan. Continue to stir gently over medium heat for about 4-5 minutes or until the mixture has thickened slightly.
  • Remove from the heat, transfer to a medium-sized shallow bowl and allow to cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours, or overnight.
  • Transfer the chilled milk mixture into an ice cream maker, and process it according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Remove the previously frozen heavy cream from the freezer, break it into roughly 1/2 inch pieces and add them along with the chopped pistachios to the final stage of the ice cream maker’s churning process. The ice cream will have a soft and creamy texture at this stage and is ready to be served. Alternatively, it can be returned to the freezer for 2 hours for a firmer texture.
  • Transfer the ice cream to an air-tight and freezer-safe container, cover with parchment paper to prevent icicles, and freeze for long-term storage.


If you are not using an ice cream maker, you can prepare the ice cream manually. Place the ice cream mixture in a deep, freezer-safe dish and place in the freezer for about 1 hour. Remove from the freezer and using a spatula break up the frozen bits from the edges. Vigorously stir them back in with a whisk, handheld mixer or blender. Return to the freezer, and then repeat this process every 20 minutes. Repeat until the ice cream is fully formed, about 2-3 hours, or until you have soft ice cream consistency. Add the previously frozen heavy cream chips and chopped pistachios and transfer to an airtight container. Cover with parchment paper and freeze for 4 hours.
Cheat method:
A store-bought vanilla ice cream can be purchased to use as a base to create this ice cream.  Allow the ice cream to soften before incorporating the saffron-rosewater mixture and pistachios.
Keyword akbar mashti, bastani, gol bolbol, ice cream, saffron, saffron ice cream
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!