Sitting down to watch it again reminded brought all of the fine details into focus, and reinforced (to me, at least) why I consider this a foodie movie. At just over three minutes in, food already gets a mention...in the form of pakoras. A couple of minutes later, we see Varun learning to make a Coconut Curry.
Amidst the family madness surrounding a wedding, and the small love stories developing throughout, offerings of large containers of nuts, bottles of Scotch, jalebis sizzling in oil in the background, ordering a salt lassi or a glass of "the best chai in the world", mentions of cooking sesame chicken, and reaching for a samosa on a high shelf pepper the film.
If you've seen the film, and you know me, you can probably guess where I'm going with this. As a matter of fact, you're probably surprised that I haven't mentioned it yet. That's right, Chuski (aka, ice pops)! We see bride-to-be, Aditi, sneaking away with the excuse of getting a chuski when she and the ladies head into the congested city to pick sari's for the wedding party. She is actually going to make a phone call to the married man she'd been having an affair with, and wasn't quite ready to let go of. But she wind up with a dripping pink chuski that she passed on to Ria...who slurped it in the street, eliciting a catcall of sorts from a male passing by. I mention because I adore the character of Ria, and her response makes me giggle.
But the chuski makes a reappearance later on in the film (again with Aditi), but this time eating one side by side with her soon-to-be-husband as they stroll and talk...and she finally comes to her senses and decides to devote herself to the cute, kind, available (well, to her...they are engaged) guy.
After I finished to flick to dancing and music and a happy ending, I promptly looked up the word "chuski", just to be sure that it meant ice pop. It does. Sort of. It seems to be more of a general Hindi word meaning "ices" such as ice candy, shaved ice, snow cones, ice pops, and generally...frozen treats to keep you cool under the hot Indian sun. Much like a nieve in Mexico. Again, I really wanted to make one that was flavored and colored by marigolds, but since that wasn't an option right now, I went with another traditional chuski flavoring - rosewater. Rosewater is used to cool and refresh, and I haven't used it in a while. So, rosewater it was. Now, I went the creamy route, which probably isn't very traditional - but it's ridiculously addictive and endlessly tasty...just one lick will leave you wanting more.
Creamy Rosewater-Cardamom Chuski w/ Almonds
Prep Time: 5-10 minutes (+ time to freeze)
Cook Time: n/a
Keywords: dessert snack vegetarian soy-free sweetened condensed milk almonds rosewater popsicles frozen Indian summer
Ingredients (12 (2.5 ounce) ice pops)
- 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
- 1-1/2 cups half & half
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2-1/2 teaspoons rosewater
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
- pinch of fine sea salt
- 1-3 drops red food coloring, optional
- 1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted
Whisk everything except the almonds together in a large measuring cup with a spout until thoroughly combined. Starting with just a drop, add enough food coloring to give you a delicate pink tint (if using).
Divide the toasted almonds evenly among your popsicle molds. Pour the mixture into the molds.
Freeze until solid, at least 4 hours, adding the popsicle sticks in at the correct time for your mold.
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