a man putting red and orange coloured syrups onto an Indian gola

What is Indian Gola?

Origin: India

Type: Shaved Ice Dessert

Main Flavours: Flavoured Syrups, Condensed Milk, Chaat Masala

About Gola:

Gola is a beloved Indian shaved ice dessert that offers a burst of fruit and tangy flavours (as well as a refreshing escape from the heat). It consists of finely shaved ice, which is moulded onto a stick and drenched in a variety of colourful and tangy flavoured syrups. Often, it is drizzled with condensed milk and sprinkled with chaat masala for an extra kick. Gola is versatile and can be customised to your taste.

See below for our recipe

What Zsófi Says About Gola

You can call it gola, chuski, or barf ka gola, this shaved ice dessert will sure tempt you in the heat Mumbai’s streets emanate. Walking through the most populous city in India where the average temperature in the summer is 30 degrees, you will find a wooden cart on most street corners pushed by the famous golawalas, or gola vendors, ready to serve any sweaty customer in just a couple of minutes. Their cure for the heat: an ice cone/popsicle-style ice dessert.

Gola is a shaved ice dessert made with a hand-crank machine, on which the ice is shaved. Once it is the perfect texture, the ice is compressed into a cup, soaked with some fruit syrup, and stabbed with a stick to create the feel of a popsicle. Golas come in many fruit flavours such as orange or lemon and the result is a colourful, cooling treat, easy to enjoy on the go. One thing though, be careful! Golas are often a messy eating experience, which although only adds to the fun, it should really discourage you from wearing any white clothing on your gola-eating days.

Read Zsófi’s full article on shaved ice desserts!

Indian Gola Recipe

Indian Gola Ingredients

  • Shaved ice (the best shaved ice comes from a shaved ice machine, but if you don’t have one at home you can put ice in a strong blender or put it in a bag and smash it with a rolling pin)
  • Flavoured syrup (rose is the most popular in India but it can be hard to get hold of! If you can’t find it, try mango, lemon or orange instead)
  • Condensed milk
  • Chaat masala
  • Wooden sticks (optional)

Indian Gola Instructions

Make the shaved ice using your chosen method. If it’s a hot day, keep it in the fridge whilst you prepare your other ingredients, or prepare the other ingredients first (don’t put it back into the freezer because it will freeze back into one big lump!).

Pack the shaved ice tightly onto a stick (or into a ball in a bowl if you don’t have any sticks). Drizzle with your choice of syrup and condensed milk, then top with chaat masala. Serve immediately and enjoy!

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