Wrapping up my series on Persian food for Type 2 diabetics, will be a recipe for Persian ice cream. Persian Pistachio Ice Cream – or Bastani as it is called in Farsi – is always the same combination of flavors. Vanilla ice cream, pistachios, rosewater flavoring, a subtle hint of saffron, and then bits of frozen cream folded in, give this ice cream layers of delicate flavor with the perfect amount of texture.
In Persian cuisine, this ice cream, or bastani, would be served with crispy waffle-type cookies, either in a bowl with the waffle cookies tucked in on the side, or my kids’ favorite way – as part of an ice cream sandwich made with two flat waffle cookies and a scoop of bastani pressed between them for eating out of hand.
Bastani is easy to make with store-bought vanilla ice cream, and the “no sugar added” version I like the best is the Blue Bunny Sweet Freedom brand. To me, it has the richness and deep vanilla flavor that works well in many dishes, AND it only has 5g sugar per 1/2-cup serving.
About rosewater flavoring
This is a traditional flavoring for many desserts from the Middle East. It really is made from the petals of roses, and adds a delicate floral flavor and fragrance to dishes. Rosewater can be overpowering if you are not used to it, and I only use two teaspoons in this recipe so it is not overwhelming the flavor of the other ingredients. There is a link to an online source for rosewater listed in the ingredients below.