Chasing flavours – Malai Makhan


The traditional Malai Makkhan in Lucknow
The traditional Malai Makkhan in Lucknow

Malai Makkhan or cream butter is one of the most amazing sweet snacks sold during the winters in Lucknow and Kanpur (and also some other parts of UP). While the name may scare the diet conscious, the true product is much much lighter and devoid of any noticeable fat content.

I normally had trouble describing how it looks like, and thus the picture above. Incidently, I have been buying this amazing sweet from the same seller (who comes on a bicycle singing along makkhan malai on the streets) for over a decade! 

The best description of the recipe of this treat is  – saffron flavoured frothed cream, made by hanging unsalted butter overnight in dew and then aerating it by beating it.

Dew being an important factor to manufacture this delicacy, its only during the winters and early spring that we Lucknow-ites are blessed with this. I has a slightly sweet flavor of  frothy cream which just vanishes in your mouth tickling your taste buds wanting for more.


24 thoughts on “Chasing flavours – Malai Makhan

    1. awesome awesome awesome..i miss eatin tat so much..and ure rite .. definitely the best n most popular sweet in knp n luck…..a must eat!

  1. I fully agree with you, I make ice cream at home and my life abroad has exposed me to the best ice creams around but nothing compares to this. Sadly India should push this delectable dessert to the west and instead it just stays in the shadows.

    1. Wow i agree with everyone above an miss it too.. have it everytime i go to lucknow fromt he same person who has been selling it since last 30 years. since i used to chase after him and wondering if there was nayway of bringing this delicacy to west..

  2. hey dude.. thanks for sharing the recipe! i was looking for recipe of this rare delicacy, since time immoral.. finally was able to google it.. and bro.. a really nice blog.. feeling nostalgic after reading all these comments.. i too used to chase one particular bhaiya near to my home in ravindra palli.. lucknow.. and i still dont believe it.. he comes even now! man.. 25 years.. non stop.. every winter.. this frothy yummy and meltie sweet dish is just awesome.. i will definitely try this recipe.. and if possible.. contact my same old dear bhaiya.. and ask him the recipe.. on video! i hope i am able to catch him this winter.. again.. thanks a ton ankur!

  3. Hey,

    I have had this on various occassions in Allahabad. It’s always the same vendor. An old gentleman with a long grey beard dressed in saffrom coloured clothes.

    I was introduced to this vendor and the delicacy long back at my cousin’s wedding. I hesitated to tast the “froth” but this gentleman soothed me out and insisted that I take a little bit.

    And I must say, its such a lovely, light, not-that-sweet dessert.

    It just vanishes in your mouth!

  4. and I am trying making it at home today.. had left some malai out last night.. and it turned all frothy.. now going to whisk a lil and adding ‘bhura’ or granualar sugar (used in laddos) to put on top.. might add saffron. depends on how it goes.. wish me luck!!!

    1. Hi, Im crazy for Mallai makhan but iv shifted out of knp and sadly haven’t visited it from a decade! I’d realllyyyy love to make it @home.. could u pls tell me the recipe in detail 🙂 plssss! thanks..

  5. Malai makhan is liked by the most of the people. The kanpur is our city and it is our duty to make is clean and pollution free. please give your full support.

  6. is anybody know how to make it, n what it called in delhi
    i really love it but sadly i m not able to eat it
    plz help me

    1. In Delhi, it is sold near Nayi Sadak and Fatehpuri (Chandni Chowk). There they call it Daulat ki chat. However, it does not taste that good as they add grounded sugar from above which ruins it.

  7. I wish to taste it atleast once in my life. My Dad was born & brought up in Kanpur. He loved ‘Makkhan Malai’ & ‘Makku’ when he used to stay there. He left Kanpur 30 years ago, but not even a day goes without the mention of Makkhan Malai. Now, even I want to savour this delicacy and want to relive and experience the awesomeness of it. I hope my wish comes true some day. 🙂

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