Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Mango Delight

Mango, or mangifera indica is the most popular tropical, king of fruits and India’s National fruit. It has been known to have existed 5000 years ago and is indigenous to India hence its biological name. Buddhists are believed to have spread it across Asia and gradually it spread all over the world
Mango trees live for a long time and some three hundred years old trees are known to still bear fruit. It comes in many varieties ….langra, dussehri, fazli, chausa, angoori, safeda, amarpali, alphonso being the well known ones. Since 1987, every year an International Mango festival is held in N. Delhi where people can sample varieties of mango for free. Quizzes and competitions are held to create awareness about this luscious tasty fruit.
Mango tree is considered sacred. The leaves of mango tree are hung outside the house on Diwali and on the day of Greh Pravesh pooja , as it is considered auspicious.
Remember the Mango Slice advertisement where Katrina Kaif in monochrome is enjoying drinking a single drop of Slice, oblivious to everything else till the man walks in and says “waiting for me?”. She cleverly hides the slice bottle and smiles knowingly.
India is the largest cultivator of mango, but since the consumption is so much within the country, not much of it is exported. Mango pickle, mango chutney, mango drinks like Frooti and Slice are some of the processed varieties of the fruit. There was a time when our grandmothers and mothers made morabba of mango, amla,carrot, which is essentially a preservative of the fruit/vegetable in a thick sweetened liquid. But with changing tastes people hardly eat it anymore.
If you happen to travel form Mumbai to Delhi on a flight in Summers, as you collect your baggage you'll see numerous boxes of Alphonso mangoes which people carry from Mumbai as this variety, native of Ratangiri is not easily available in Delhi. Alphonso is considered to be the best variety and it is also the most expensive. It is a highly popular Summer gift item.
The influence of mango also can be seen in embroidery motifs and other apparels where the ‘paisley’ is inspired from the shape of the mango. It can be seen in Kashmiri embroidery on shawls and Kanjeevaram silk sarees from South India.
Come summers, aam panna is a favorite drink made in virtually every household. It is made by boiling green raw mangoes in pressure cooker. On cooling, the pulp is extracted, sieved and diluted with water. Sugar is added to neutralize its sour taste and roasted cumin seeds and salt is added to give it a great flavor. It works as a great thirst quencher just like nimboo pani in summers.
In this post I am sharing two mango recipes… one sour and the other sweet.
Aam Ki Launji:
Ingredients: •
1 cup Raw Mango (peeled and diced)
5 tbsp Sugar
½ tsp Saunf (fennel seeds)
¼ tsp Kalonji (onion seeds)
¼ tsp Haldi (turmeric) powder
A pinch of Hing (asafoetida)
2 tbsp Oil
Salt to taste
Peel the skin of the raw mangoes and dice into small cubes.
Boil five cups of water in a pan.
Add salt, turmeric powder, three tablespoon sugar and mangoes into it.
Blanch the mangoes and drain out the extra liquid left in the pan.
Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a separate pan and add fennel, onion seeds and a pinch of asafoetida.
Keep stirring for two minutes.
Now add a little salt, the remaining sugar and the blanched mangoes into it.
Saute for one minute and remove from the flame.
Serve the mango launji with pooris or paranthas.
Mango Mousse
5 Cups ripe yellow mango puree
1 tbsp Unflavored gelatin
1/2 Cup boiling water
1 Cup sugar
1-1/2 Cups whipped cream
5 Egg whites
Sprinkle gelatin over warm water in a bowl, keep stirring until it dissolves completely.
Allow to cool for about 10 minutes.
Mix the mango puree with sugar in a blender.
Pour this mixture over the cooled gelatin.
Whisk the cream till it is thick.
Pour cream over the mango mixture and fold till uniformly blended.
Whisk the egg whites till stiff.
Fold the egg whites gently through the mango mixture till it is completely mixed .
Allow to set and chill in the refrigerator for 2 hours.
Mango Mousse is ready!